Fighting Pregnant Women

I like the title: “Damn it. You made me care. Briefly.”

A nice Imperial flavor, there.

More to the point, Jill Bearup makes a good case that a healthy, young, well-trained, heavily pregnant woman can, indeed defeat her opponents in a melee fight.

More than one Imperial Noblewoman will be taking notes.

Advise to such Noblewomen: a good submachine-gun/assault rifle – and a few frag grenades – are a lot easier to handle. Even a pistol is better than short spears, in most combat situations.

And for melee combat, most Imperial code duello’s grant exceptions to pregnant nobility. But there are times when guns aren’t smart: high-oxygen environments, say.

Two more factors:

Michael Althauser
This scene fills me with pure joy every time I watch it, because it’s *just that well done*. I love your interpretation about the Pattern intervening during the bits of slo-mo, and unlike a lot of other folks, never had any issues with a very pregnant woman fighting the way that Tigraine is during this scene – the Aiel are supposed to be almost superhuman badasses, so I am not at all surprised that she manages to take down… 5? soldiers over the course of this scene.

Obligatory: this is the best scene in the entire first season of the show.

Superhuman genetics will help out in these situations: but this is more applicable to those high-G-homeworld Vilani women than Solomani women.

Also, having supernatural assistance is a good thing. But Referee shouldn’t let the plot armour get too thick: the story gets boring that way.

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A Howitzer Team

If civilian Referees want to better see combat in their mind’s eye, now’s a good time to view a whole host of videos on the subject.

Right off the bat, I can see that the old images in my head about entire batteries of artillery is obsolete, at least for this war. The Ukrainians are in a better position than the Russians vis-a-vis enemy spotting, but even they take care to hide, and to disperse their guns.

It looks like a team of ~10 men, but due to my spotty (at best) knowledge of military units & their staffing, I don’t know who does what, or how fast they can get out if they think they’ve been compromised. Nor do I know how many shells they have, or if they need electricity, or how many vehicles they need to get their guns, men, and equipment from A to B. (Or refuelling their vehicles).

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Blood and Empire

Or, “Pretty Words, Harsh Realities, and Core Competencies”

Dark Conservatives.

From The Conservatism of Decolonization by Lipton Matthews

Decolonization is the latest buzzword to signal the confusion of multicultural activists who unwittingly endorse Western culture. By divorcing the British monarchy to become a republic, Barbados has sparked new debates about the relevancy for ex-colonies of retaining the monarchy. Yet despite the legacy of colonialism, Barbados recently became the first country in the world to establish a metaverse embassy and ranks first in Latin America and the Caribbean in broadband development.

Notwithstanding left-leaning propaganda, economic growth is not precluded by colonialism. In Africa, for example, some countries recorded high growth rates under colonialism, whereas others underperformed. Even Jamaica experienced surging growth rates as a colony in the 1950s and ’60s. Colonialism is but one of several factors that can influence economic and social development.

However, Jamaican prime minister Andrew Holness thinks that Jamaica must become a republic to actualize its true potential: “We intend to … fulfil our true ambitions and destiny as an independent, prosperous country.” After attaining independence, Jamaica regressed relative to newly industrialized countries like Singapore and South Korea, so if it had the capacity to be prosperous, it would have become so long ago.

Living under Imperial Authority does not, by definition, mean low growth rates. Depending on the population, culture, political situation, and finances, it can mean high economic growth.1

True: Jamaica failed to become productive. To the contrary, it became lawless, as the political parties armed their affiliated criminal gangs. This is still better than a unified tyranny, though.2

Because inferior governance has degraded institutions, Jamaica has failed to capitalize on billions in aid from the European Union and technical assistance sponsored by multilaterals—hence Jamaicans can only blame themselves for failure. But the irony is that Jamaica’s decision to decolonize is an implicit admission that Western institutions are actually superior. If Jamaicans were serious about removing the shackles of Western imperialism, they would adopt a precolonial African system of government rather than choosing to become a republic.

I like that bit about “Jamaicans can only blame themselves for failure.”

If they actually accept responsibility, then they can actually repent, and consider, and go down a different road.

That would be good to see.

Unlike Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution, which waged a war on China’s intellectual traditions, the decolonization movement is embarrassingly conservative. Leaders might speak glibly about decolonization, but they without hesitation comply with regulations drafted by Western powers even if they are insensible. The European Union has been pressuring Caribbean countries to conform to dubious anti–money laundering laws when countries in Europe can facilitate money laundering on a greater scale.

There is a covert admission that Western countries set global trends, so whenever developing countries claim that they are decolonizing, this really suggests that they are just mimicking Western social movements. Hence to prove the seriousness of their case, critics should adopt ideas that contradict Western principles and cease pretending to be radical.

Right-wing humanism – “conservatism” – eventually becomes a road to failure.

Left-wing humanism – “revolution” – is the express lane to failure.

I’d rather succeed under God, then encourage a nation to take any lawless road to hell, fast or slow. But it takes study, and training, and work, and sacrifice, and generations of time, to learn to properly disciple a nation.

That road works, and there are some rapid results.

(Can you imagine how influential and wealthy Black American families would be today if they had the Black marriage and divorce rates of 1950? Strong families lead to a strong people, but weak families mean a weak nation.)

But much (not all) of the greatest gains takes time to mature.

Get To Work. Now.

From Cultural Traits and Work Ethic: Human Capital Matters by Lipton Matthews

Primarily because life is challenging, work ethic builds resilience; hence people who are easily perturbed by difficulties will easily quit and never actualize their potential. In school and in business, we are compelled to navigate hostile environments by managing complicated personalities. Without grit, entrepreneurs are bound to fail, since on the path to success they will encounter naysayers and bureaucrats aiming to derail their progress. If prospective entrepreneurs were intimidated by regulations, then we would not be enjoying the fruits of their labor.

Likewise, students contend with arrogant lecturers, incompetent peers, and mindless administrators. But when success is the only option, one must literally overcome the storm. People with laser focus are undaunted by the obstacles because they can conceptualize the long-term outcomes of their labor. On the other hand, since traits that induce performance are not equally distributed, obviously some people will be deficient in social skills that enable success.

Life is hard. Expect to pay a price, if you want to succeed.

Another harrowing reality is that due to the unequal distribution of success-inducing traits, some characteristics are more abundant in certain countries relative to others. East AsiansAmericans, and Germans are known for an insane work ethic that’s not replicated in most places. Although there is a resurgence of interest in the relationship between culture and economic development, economists rarely identify culture as a direct barrier to the acquisition of human capital.

I would not say “insane” as that’s a negative term.

I prefer “supernatural”.

Whether that supernatural work ethic is from Above or Below, depends on the goals chosen. Power itself does not justify, no matter what the Darwinians say.

Law and Justice, beyond the control and definition of Powerful Men, comes first. A truth that Darwin, Kant, Hegel, Marx, Hume, Gibbon, et al utterly despised, by the way.

Let the dead bury the dead.

Incidentally, the Germans and East Asians aren’t going to be around by 2300 or so. Christian Americans of all races, on the other hand have a road to survival… if they choose to take it.

  • Humility & Lawfulness => Repentance => Error correction, Feedback acceptance => Growth and Increasing Ability to Learn => Life.
  • Pride & Lawlessness => Arrogance => Refusal to Admit Error => Increasing Rigidity, and Decreased Ability to Learn => Death.

Once, a young woman revealed to me that she was dismissed for arriving late on three consecutive occasions despite being warned. Even though she was warned, this young woman admitted that she was late because she had to eat her breakfast. If eating breakfast was so important to her, then she should have gotten up earlier to have her meal to allow her to arrive on time. Such dismissals deprive young people of the opportunity to improve themselves; however, unfortunately many people attribute these dismissals to the grumpiness of managers. Even worse is that the subpar performance of the Jamaican worker is so glaring that Jamaicans are known for saying that one Chinese employee can muster the tasks of five Jamaicans.

Employers often complain that Jamaican workers will show up to do work on a site for the day, but you won’t see them for the rest of the week. So, to correct human capital deficiencies, some in the Jamaican private sector like Paul B. Scott are suggesting that the country import human capital from abroad:

There is little capacity on the supply side to effectively execute what needs to be done to fulfil the potential capacity of Jamaica. If you want another 10,000 hotel rooms or increase BPO (business process outsourcing) or have factories relocated here, then on the supply side, the labor front must be addressed.

Training the population would be an alternative in a different environment, but when natives are unresponsive to training and working, such recommendations raise serious problems.

Work ethic is not enough: Jamaicans, unlike the Chinese, do not live under a government that has slaughter their future and exalts the Self-worshipping Party of Power over survival.

By 2040, the Jamaicans may still be far behind Japan… but they will be thanking God that they don’t live in China.

Still: Matthews point stands. Having a better work ethic delivers the goods. Unfortunately, the Chinese don’t have a tradition of armed self-defence, while the Jamaicans have a tradition of envy-driven looting and murder.

Being in the right is not enough: not if you have family and home and property to defend. Something more is needed. Something… persuasive to large groups of would-be thieves, murderers, and arsonists.

Displacement automatically breeds resentment, yet the reality is that if Jamaican culture fails to evolve, then natives will be displaced. The decline of pork barrel politics in Europe and modernization in Japan and Singapore indicate that people can mature if they elect leaders capable of reforming culture and institutions. Jamaica has immense potential, and it would be quite sad for its people to perish due to a lack of knowledge and visionless leadership.

If Jamaicans want to win, they can win.

If they don’t… well, I can see a group of aggressively-minded armed entrepreneurs & their families and clans — maybe from America, maybe from Mexico, maybe from Brazil — looking for territory to expand into, cast an eye on certain tropical islands in the 2200s.

Long after the secularistic Nation-State system has collapsed into sterility and bankruptcy. And the centralized governments are just a tale of long ago.

God is patient, for decades and centuries.

And then… time’s up.

And all the cries of the dying rises up to the sky…. unheard and ignored.

It’s happened before. And I am confident that it will happen again.

Jamaica will be here after Russia and China are dead.

But that’s simply not good enough. Not in the hard, demanding eyes of God.

Jamaican evil – passive laziness and active lawlessness – must be ditched today, for Jamaica to truly secure a future worth talking about.

But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called “today,” that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.

Hebrew 3:13, ESV

Do you want your people to be prosperous and secure in 2200? Get to work NOW, in 2022.

You just couldn’t care less about your people in 2200? Follow the example of the Progressives and the Secularists.

If you want your people to be impoverished and in rapid decline… in order to personally get lots of power, right now? THAT’S where the Marxists come in!

Ask the Russians and the Chinese for details.

Tribe Matters, Power Matters.

From History and Institutions Matter: The Postslavery Development of Jamaica and Barbados by Lipton Matthews

The success of Barbados relative to other Caribbean countries has unleashed a welter of studies explaining the ascendancy of Barbados. Frequently, Barbados is compared to Jamaica because they are both former colonies of England that attained independence in the 1960s.

More important is that Barbados and Jamaica were Britain’s most lucrative colonies in the British West Indies thereby making the study of their divergent paths particularly intriguing. Due to historical similarities, some surmise that variations in performance between Jamaica and Barbados are primarily a consequence of postindependence policies with Barbados adopting a less statist approach.

However, as historical sources will explain the success of Barbados is attributable to its institutional history and cultural profile. Historians like Trevor Burnard and Orlando Patterson contend that slavery in Barbados and Jamaica was excruciatingly brutal, but in a pathbreaking essay Patterson opines that because the landscape of Barbados limited the potential for the emergence of maroon communities slaves rationally calculated that revolutions were counter to their survival. The responses to slave insurrections were swift and brutal and in a small territory like Barbados there were few opportunities for alternative communities, so rather than being rebellious, slaves in Barbados found it more feasible to cooperate with the plantocracy.

Historian Barry Gaspar marvels at the fact that during the eighteenth-century Barbados failed to record insurrections to usurp the plantocracy. Rather than indicating the passivity of enslaved blacks, this suggests that the planter class could easily thwart conspiracies. Usually, slaves who were fearful of backlash would leak intelligence to planters, and the pace at which the state squashed uprisings often demotivated slaves from planning other revolts.

D.H. Figueredo and Frank Argote Freyre in A Brief History of the Caribbean show that brutal responses to uprisings created a deterrent to revolts: “There were uprisings in 1649, 1775, and 1692. The 1675 rebellion involved more than 100 slaves from plantations across the island. Betrayed by a female slave named Fortuna, the conspirators were captured. Half of them were executed. The rest were punished and sent back to plantations. The 1692 rebellion involved more than 300 slaves, nearly one-third of whom were executed.”

Such arrangements resulted in divergent socio-cultural realities. As Orlando Patterson observes in his fascinating article “Institutions, Colonialism, and Economic Development: The Acemoglu-Johnson-Robinson (AJR) Thesis in Light of the Caribbean Experience,” there was greater pressure for black Barbadians to conform to the culture of the white slaveholder class by appropriating British ideas.

Violence and control — even from the oppressor — changes things.

(You might want to ask the Arabs why there are so very few Blacks in Arab lands, despite centuries of slavery over millions and millions of Africans hauled in to do the work Arabs just couldn’t be bothered to do themselves.

Violence and control does matter: but religion and law matters more.)3

In contrast to Barbados, Jamaica afforded more opportunities to erect maroon communities and unlike Barbados, Jamaica did not record a natural increase in the slave population so there was greater dependence on importing Africans who were disproportionately responsible for revolts. Therefore, due to the potent influence of African customs and wider options for rebellious slaves, black Jamaicans developed a creole Jamaican culture that often contradicted the cultural ideals of the planter class.

Based on the evidence presented so far it would appear to observers that geography occupies a central role in explaining the character of black Barbadians, but it is only a piece of the puzzle. 

True, up to a point.

In Barbados, there was a cultural selection for blacks expressing bourgeois traits. According to historian Hilary Beckles in his 2016 publication The First Black Slave Society: Britain’s ‘’Barbarity Time’’ in Barbados, 1636–1876, Bajan planters adopted a ruthless form of management that rewarded compliant slaves but punished unruly subordinates.

Enslaved workers were aware that the Bajan government was quite successful at squashing revolts, so they had an incentive to follow rules and execute their tasks in a timely manner. Because uncooperative slaves were either isolated or killed, Barbados had a greater supply of black slaves who were more likely to collaborate with planters and invest time in acquiring human capital to prepare them for freedom. Orlando Patterson refers to the behavior of black Barbadians as a “counter-hegemonic strategy of subaltern cultural appropriation.” Contrary to the musings of revolutionaries, black Barbadians were not passive, but rather long-term thinkers.

They understood that failing to appropriate British culture and institutions would never grant them the confidence of white elites to manage the country. Moreover, black Barbadians also knew that if whites felt threatened by their presence, they would be hesitant to transfer power. By demonstrating their propensity for compliance black Barbadians were engaging in the shrewd management of white officials by letting them think they were controllable so that they could be incorporated into senior management.

According to Orlando Patterson, this strategy was indeed successful:

So confident was the Barbadian elite of their control of the Barbadian working class that it was the only Caribbean Island not to abolish its system of elite representative government in the latter half of the 19th century in favor of direct “Crown Colony” rule from Britain out of fear that they were being taken over by the increasingly educated colored groups.

The Barbadian Assembly remained in place until the 1950s in the last century, a 300-year history of legislative continuity. Another expression of their self-confidence, appeared much earlier: the remarkable fact that the island’s police force was composed entirely of Afro-Barbadians by 1842, a mere 4 years after the final abolition of slavery.

Indeed, Patterson submits that Barbados is more developed than Jamaican because black Barbadians had greater exposure to managing institutions, as a result of the confidence that whites reposed in their abilities. The British were so impressed by black Barbadians they became quite useful to the imperial project notes Orlando Patterson:

As impressed by the disciplined work ethic, education, and lack of rebelliousness of Barbadians as were employers in other islands, the British imperial authorities by the latter half of the 19th century decided that Barbadians were the “smart” and loyal blacks, and proceeded to train and use them in its imperial expansion and consolidation in Africa, the Caribbean and Central America as they had done with groups such as the Sikhs and Gurkhas.

Evidently, blacks in Jamaica and Barbados inherited similar institutions, but black Barbadians inherited a richer history of institutional management than their Jamaican counterparts and this has entrenched striking differences in the economic performance of both countries.

After survival, comes growth.

“Did you learn the lessons the Masters taught you, that he carved into your flesh, into the flesh of your forefathers?”

You want to be in a position to say yes. You want to have learned the lessons your forefathers paid such a high price to gain.

“My people were never slaves, and never will be slaves!”

Maybe so.

But, there is always sterility and extermination: by the hands of others, or by your own hands.

(Waves to the Chinese, the East Asians… and the Europeans.)

One way or another, God will get His due, pointedly extracted from His enemies.

Whether they like it, or not.4

It’s His land and His air, His food and His water, His time and His logic5, after all.

Yet we should not overlook the possibility that Barbados exhibits greater success than Jamaica due to the imprint of the Igbos.

The Igbos are known for entrepreneurial and intellectual excellence in Nigeria and across the world and from 1740 to 1810 the Igbo accounted for around 40 percent of all slave arrivals in Barbados. Jamaica also imported Igbo slaves; however scientific tests reveal that though most Africans who arrived in Jamaica were disembarked from the Bight of Biafra most Jamaicans are descendants of Africans who were domiciled on the Gold Coast. Igbos were usually taken from the Bight of Biafra, but slaves from across Africa were gathered in this region for export hence many of the captives were not of Igbo origin.

Historical sources assert that Igbos were admired for their civility and intelligence, yet they were also portrayed as soft and likely to commit suicide. On the other hand, Akan slaves from the Gold Coast were noted for being talented workmen with a proclivity for planning revolts. Considering that the management system in Barbados imposed immense pressure on slaves to conform in Barbados there would have been a more robust selection for the Igbo personality type than in Jamaica. 

The case studies of Jamaica and Barbados illustrate that institutional history and culture can indeed shape contemporary development. Although both countries seem similar, deeper penetration of historical sources has shown that Barbados was already ahead of Jamaica long before gaining independence.

Whether Caribbean Blacks remember the Igbo and Akan nations simply doesn’t matter. God remembers, and He makes certain that our long-dead ancestors get a voice and have an impact, even today.

Just as our choices, made today, will shape the world centuries from now. Whether we want that responsibility, or not.

What we do really does echo in eternity… regardless of our desires.

And we WILL be held responsible for our choices.

So, ignorance isn’t bliss. Surprise, surprise.

But… if we do remember where we come from… we can get a better handle on who we are, the inheritance our ancestors gave us — for good or for ill — and be able to measure if we are going up, or down.

Knowledge is better than ignorance. Memory is better than forgetfulness.

But we need God’s standard, as well as our own history, to know which way is up.

And the blood of Christ, to cover our inevitable failures before His holy and uncompromising Law-Word.

1This is in contrast to Marxism: their may be a growth squirt in the initial ten years, but – depending on how seriously the rulers take their ideology – poverty is coming to stay, sooner or later. Chairman Deng was the great exception, freeing up Chinese agriculture and opening up the economy: but the dominant religion of a society simply cannot be wrong, so Chairman Xi is returning the country to its natural, properly Marxist form.

And Deng did demand the enforcement of the One-Child policy, laying down the road to the death of his nation. Money now and power now, in return for forcing your national future into the grave, was a bad call. And an unneeded one: you can have both children and economic growth, after all, as God promised to His people! You just have to let go of that thirst for power over others…

…but Deng proved, in more ways than one, that Pragmatic Power Today was his only true Lord and God. Not Communist ideology, not the Chinese People, not a strong Chinese State, and certainly not the Maker and Judge of Heaven and Earth!

2One thing about Putin: he never did properly reinstall Marxism, preferring to re-found his nation on fascism/gangsterism and a certain Russian Orthodox veneer. (About 1% of Russians attend church, by the way.)

Sure, he failed in the end, as the bills of corruption, sterility, lawlessness, and powerless-hopelessness come due. And being less of a tyrant than Stalin only means becoming less of a destructive failure. But we should aim for more than to merely fail more slowly!

Putin looked to America for help… but by 2007, he knew that the Americans never would offer a hand.

Only a fist.

A shame.

Yes, “love your enemies” is a difficult proposition. But a Russia that was free, democratic, grounded in the rule of law, and could improve its economy and demographics (and in return, Putin et. al. get to retire in comfort in 2010, say, and enjoy their ill gotten gains in Brazil or something after retiring) would be good for the world.

But a Russia that recovers, that survives, is rebuilt on a Christian state, could grow healthy and strong and free, is a Russia that could challenge the United States somehow, someday.

And that simply will not be permitted. See the Wolfowitz Doctrine for details.

I recall pre-Imperial America, where missionaries eager to rebuild the world were the main export, instead of military advisors and well-educated financial conmen.

An America long dead and gone, as the Puritan leadership dumped the Kingdom of God in the name of Racial and National Power, while the remaining believers retreated from the Commandments and Teaching the Nations, to rapture-escapism and mystical consolations.

“Oh, the tiny number of Masters in the Party of Wealth and Power – Democrats, of course, with the Republicans trotting behind them – are SO POWERFUL! The Holy Spirit is SO WEAK! All we can do is pray and hope to escape the Coming Wrath!”

So much rancid, lazy, will-to-failure, cowardly, faithless, unbelieving Christians.
In the pulpits, and in the pews.

And a snake slithers up, to whisper “So the Servants of God chose to be, to better reflect their Lord.”

Yes, that IS Satan you hear, openly pointing and laughing at God’s disobedient people.

Ever wonder why God hates worthless servants? Well, now you know: by disobeying God, we give opportunity for His external enemies to slander His name.

(But God knows who His internal enemies are,
no matter how much they cry out “Lord, Lord” and wave their Bibles about.

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’ – Matthew 7:21-23, ESV

God knows who our real Lord is.

The Lord whose Wrath we fear. The Lord whose Law we obey.)

Jesus teaches

“I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one.” — John 17:15, ESV

It’s time to repent, and fear and obey God, over and above fearing and obeying Powerful Men.

3I miss old Christian America, sometimes… but God does not.

The Christian America of old would have never ended slavery, or segregation for that matter, so God decided that it would be better to have these impious-racist Progressive slave-traders/ genocidal/ Jim Crow segregationist/ eugenist/ welfare-warfare statists rule rather than have these pious-racist Calvinists enslavers represent His Name.

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel across sea and land to make a single proselyte, and when he becomes a proselyte, you make him twice as much a child of hell as yourselves.” — Matthew 23:15

There are enough missionaries for hell out there, proclaiming the Power of Pure Blooded (or Properly Certified) Men.

God’s people must be different.

Not only must we preach Christ is King: we must focus on expanding HIS Kingdom. Not the assembly of God: that’s Jesus’ job…

And I also say to thee, that thou art a rock, and upon this rock I will build my assembly, and gates of Hades shall not prevail against it

Matthew 16:18, Young’s Literal Translation.

… and not some priestly power-bureaucracy (who cares about that?)

(As for why I prefer the word “assembly” over “church”, see The Christian Passover by Stephen Perks. Also, to keep the focus where Jesus put it, see Discipling the Nations. The hint is in the literal nature of the translation.)

The Jews of the Second Temple, slaughtered at the hand of pagan, statist, emperor-worshiping Rome, should have served as sufficient warning. The Pure Blood of Abraham and detailed Obedience to the Rituals and Traditions is no substitute for justice, righteousness and truth.

And God has no problem using lesser-evil unbelieving people to crush greater-evil believers.

He who has ears to hear, let him hear.

4After the Empire dies, and the Welfare State is just so much dust, the survivors are going to be forced onto a better road.

The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.

G. K. Chesterton

Things don’t stay the same.

As the decades and centuries roll on, God gives less and less space to those who detest Him and His Law. A superficial, partial obedience is forcibly extracted by rebels if they want to survive even on the margins of His world, and His kingdom.

And the squeeze only gets tighter, and tighter.

Better to worship God in the heart and mind and hand, not just the lips. Better to be in the centre of Divine wealth, honour, and prosperity, rather than the margins, close to Outer Darkness.

True obedience opens the door from merely living on the crumbs falling from the Table of Christ, and being an invited guest of His wedding feast, with a seat at the table, fully satisfied with wine and bread and meat, able to speak and be heard by the Master of the House, with fellowship and love.

5 On God’s demand that His people think logically — as opposed to, say, simply saying whatever gets the most political power right now, like the Darwinians and their political kin, the Progressives and the Marxists and the long-irrelevant Nazis do — see Biblical Logic: In Theory and Practice by Joel McDurmon. Buy the cheap PDF here.

Power isn’t the point. Truth, Justice, Righteousness is the point.

As God is certain to expand His Kingdom, in time and on earth, there is no need to whore out your integrity in the supposedly sacred name of More Power Right Now.

Political power can wait: there are more important things to attend to.

Let’s get to it.

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Sophia Charlotte of Hanover

By marrying Frederick on 8 October 1684, she became Electress of Brandenburg in 1688, and after the elevation of Brandenburg-Prussia to a kingdom in 1701, she became the first Queen in Prussia. Her only child to reach maturity became King Frederick William I of Prussia. Her husband was so much in love with her that while he had an official mistress, Catharina Rickert, at his palace – in imitation of Louis XIV – he never made use of her services; however, his love for Sophia Charlotte was not reciprocated.

Wikipedia, Sophia Charlotte of Hanover

It’s this inside-the-palace scuttlebut that makes Ruling Royals so much more interesting than a President or – far worse – some aging, fearful Chairman.

Initially, Sophia Charlotte interfered in political affairs, pushing the downfall of the Prussian prime minister Eberhard von Danckelman in 1697, but soon retired to private life. 

It’s pretty rare for a Noble to be able to retire from politics, even if they see it as a drag and a bore. As a woman and a Queen Consort – instead of ruling in her own name – Sophia Charlotte was able to pull it off.

It can be argued that Constitutional Monarchies are the peak of secret Noble desires. “Let the riff-raft worry about budgets and armies and laws. I’m going to enjoy my rum, dance at the balls, lead the ceremonies, chase the skirts, and live in the Big House!”

In 1695, she had received the estates of Lietzow manor west of Berlin from her husband in exchange for further away Caputh. Here she had a Baroque summer residence erected by the architects Johann Arnold Nering and Martin Grünberg, in order to live independently from her husband and have her own court. Frederick was only allowed there by invitation, as on 11 July 1699, when she hosted a birthday party for him.

The Big House
Charlottenburg Palace,
the royal residence of the Hohenzollern family in Berlin (finished 1713)

In almost every way, the middle-class of today lives better lives than the royalty of old. One of the few ways they still have us beat is with enormous estates. Another way is with hordes of servants.

And… that’s about it.

Sophia Charlotte is mainly remembered for her friendship and correspondence with her mother’s good friend and tutor Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, whose avowed disciple she became. In addition to German, she spoke French, Italian and English fluently. Following the example set by her mother, she surrounded herself with philosophers and theologians like Isaac de BeausobreDaniel Ernst Jablonski and John Toland and inspired the foundation of the Prussian Academy of Sciences. She was interested in music, sang and played the harpsichord, had an Italian opera theater constructed, and employed the musicians Attilio Ariosti and Giovanni Bononcini. The composer Arcangelo Corelli dedicated his Op. 5 sonatas for solo violin (Rome, 1700) to her.

It’s quite easy for any motivated commoner today — yes, even in the United States — to learn French, Italian, English, and German fluently… if they actually wanted to.

Golden opportunities, blowing away in the wind…

It’s much harder for any motivated commoner to surround himself with philosophers and theologians today: but that’s OK, as both groups are intellectually sterile and quite irrelevant in today’s world.1

By some reports she disliked her husband’s elaborate ceremonies so much that during their coronation she took pinches of snuff to provide herself with “some pleasant distraction”.[1]

Some Imperial Nobles like their snuff. Others like stronger stuff.

There are few teetotalers and abstainers among the wealthy and powerful.

Sophia Charlotte was such a formidable personage that when Tsar Peter the Great first met her and her mother on his Grand Embassy in 1697, he was so overwhelmed and intimidated that he could not speak. Both women put him at ease, and he reciprocated with his natural humour and trunks full of brocade and furs.

It takes quite a woman to intimidate Peter the Great.

While on a visit to her mother in Hanover, Sophia Charlotte died of pneumonia on 21 January 1705, when she was 36 years of age.

The greatest benefit of the modern age is that fathers die before their sons.

(And yes, Sophia of Hanover was alive when her daughter was buried. A pain few Commoners today have to endure.)

A secondary benefit of commoner life today is that very few people die of pneumonia today, including the COVID years and their puffed-up fears:2 and those that do tend to be pushing 75. Not 37.

1Yes, yes, I’m a hardcore Christian Reconstructionist, so I enjoy my Rushdoony, North, Marinov, and nowadays Perks too. I keep a free PDF bookshelf of North, Marinov, and Perks on my other website, and often read up on Rushdoony at his foundation.

But outside of Reconstructionist circles, every theologian merely dutifully repeat at third hand what secular philosophers declare, and they haven’t had a new idea since Kant. Currently, that godless (and therefore lawless… when not frankly insane) bunch is dissolving into postmodernist nihilism, and should be left to share their well-deserved obscurity with the vast majority of equally worthless theologians.

2If you despise the COVID incompetent tyrants as much as I do, let me suggest a new website to visit: The Expose. Outside of China, the chains are rapidly falling off, but there’s the issue of accountability to consider. In the last three days, we have:

…and, as a bonus…

Our meritocratic rulers – “Never aristocratic! NEVER!” – have no intention of being held to account for the damage and pain they have needlessly caused.

We should smash their intentions.

And Christians should take the lead in this fight.

(Because I guarantee that the Marxist never will!)

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Warfare, Upgraded

Laser-guided shells “picking off individual targets”

The Unblinking Eye: “both sides are using drones in large numbers it means it’s becoming harder and harder to find a hiding place”

“…Aero Razvidka, a volunteer collective of Ukrainian tech nerds who’ve built their own drones and armed them dropping munitions onto Russian targets, finding a target, and then hitting it, is an example of fusion linking drones electronic intercepts all kinds of intelligence to strike weapons.”

“Air superiority has been defined as central to military success for decades, but the Russians haven’t achieved it. Leaving onlookers wondering whether that’s their incompetence or something deeper is changing.”

“The fact that Russia is relying on cruise missiles to do things at range is, to a large extent, driven by the fact that his air force has been pretty well neutered.”

Yes: cruise missiles are cheaper than pilots and aircraft. But bombs – especially dumb bombs – are cheaper than cruise missiles.

“… people walking across the battlefield are very vulnerable. These Ukrainians are setting up a shot with a javelin missile. Watch the man on the right: he’s constantly looking around for drones or other signs of the enemy. Without the protection of an armored vehicle they need bravery and luck.”

I do agree that the lone squad on the flat plains needs bravery and luck. As for the “protection” of an armoured vehicle, however…. colour me skeptical.

“… the only way you can move in that environment is through the protection of an armored vehicle, and the only way you can move across difficult country is to have either a tracked armored vehicle or a very big wheeled armored vehicle. So armored vehicles have not gone out of fashion in any way.

What is changing is the way that the protection is done, because there are new materials and new ways of providing protection to an armored vehicle which should make them lighter and more secure in the open lands of eastern Ukraine… though it’s just too easy to follow tracks and find the vehicles armored or otherwise with the inevitable artillery strikes to follow.”

I remain skeptical on armoured vehicles vs laser-guided munitions. Versus small-arms fire and shrapnel, I will grant you that. And in an environment with more dumb bombs and shells being tossed about, armoured vehicles can and do deliver value.

As for those tracks that these armoured vehicles leave behind… I have a feeling that I know the REAL reason antigrav was invented.

“… across much of eastern Ukraine survival requires being dug in and the trenches have been under bombardment for weeks. In some places it’s beginning to look like a moonscape.”

First World War memories. Or was that the First Persian Gulf War, between Iraq and Iran?

I am confident that TL 14 Imperial Marine soldiers, along with their battlesdress and fusion rifles, are also provided with entrenching tools.

“The age-old pendulum that swung between attacker and defender in warfare now favors the latter in many places there’s been no real movement for weeks and it may be that the side that runs out of precision weapons first will be the one that loses.”

EXPENSIVE precision weapons.

“Infinite money are the sinews of war”, as Cicero could have told you two thousand years ago.

And the Russian war chest, large as it is, prepared for at least fifteen years for this conflict (or something like it), does not compare to the war chest of the US and Western Europe… a price that they are merely placing on their credit card.

“I would say the the cost of having a properly configured military capability national security capability that makes serious opponents think twice, maybe three times, about whether they want to take you on… that’s got to be cheaper in the long term than letting it happen and then trying to remediate, to rebuild.

The debate among professionals is just beginning: but what’s already clear is that the return of warfare this destructive between big European countries has reminded us of the terrible cost of large-scale operations and the price of paying for an effective defence.”

I have a suspicion. I have a suspicion that Russia Putin was baited to attack Ukraine. A formal declaration by the US and NATO that Ukraine would never be admitted to NATO would have made this conflict unnecessary… but this declaration was never made.

The fact that Ukrainian territorial forces being activated a day before Russia crossed the border is also suggestive. Also, all that delicious high-tech, heavy-duty weaponry and equipment pouring in AFTER Russia was committed makes it fairly (maybe very!) likely that this was a bear trap.

Ukraine may well never become a formal member of NATO and the EU… but it’s halfway there.

And Finland and Sweden will almost certainly join NATO now. Finland being 200 km from St. Petersburg.

The matador waves his cape, catching the eye of the bull and enraging him… and cloaking where the sword actually is.

The Mighty Men Speak!

Putin is quite smart, but he was alone at his intelligence level in the Kremlin, and out of his league vis-a-vis the hundreds of observant, intelligent and hostile eyes in Washington.

(If you think President Biden is planning and conducting this war, I have a bridge to sell you. This war is a bipartisan affair, and strongly backed by the Washington establishment, but Biden manages this war about as much as Elizabeth II managed the Falklands War.

He simply provides legal authorization as C-in-C. That’s all.)1

Putin at least knows something of how the West works. Not accurately — “too much European experience, not enough American experience” — but somewhat.

In contrast, Xi Jinping does not understand the West, simply despises Western culture, but could not find a compelling alternative. (Perhaps the vigorous Communist-led extermination of traditional Chinese culture had something to do with that…) He can’t even tolerate admitting that the Party (never mind himself!) did anything wrong, or made any mistake, ever.

Putin at least tolerates public (if token and ineffective) criticism to some extent, even today.

So Xi rules all alone in… whatever the secret hidden ruling compound in Beijing is called.2 As isolated and as safe as could be.

There is a proverb among Imperial Nobles: Isolation equals death.

And Christians Must Listen, and Learn

What Christians need to remember is this: Isolation equals death.

Go mix among the pagans. Go talk to the poor and the rich. Meet the white and the black… and everyone else. Understand where they are coming from. Look at ourselves through their eyes: through their eyes. Sure, they are wrong sometimes, but they also can spot things we miss.

Listen, learn, acknowledge our mistakes, repent of our sins, fix our problems.

—> GROW <—

—> LEARN <—

—>WIN <—

We must treat the echo-chamber Progressive Press and the Strong Men in Moscow and Beijing as the example not to follow.

Jesus Christ placed FELLOWSHIP at the heart of the Lord’s Supper, not some lifeless magical re-enactment (sacramental) ceremony controlled by some Certified Priesthood.3 Sure, non-believers are barred from the Lord’s Supper… but we are not barred from eating with them.

And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.” -- Matthew 9:10-13, ESV

Christ sets the example.

I wonder when Christians – especially the pious conservative types – will follow it.

But first, get rid of the Religious Professional People Men hungering to control what Jesus did not give them – Baptism and the Lord’s Supper – in the name of the Traditions of Men.

As an aside, I hear that the Catholic Priesthood is dying out.

“The Hand of God moves in mysterious ways.”

The Protestant Pastorate is next, I’d cheerfully argue.

Time to dump the forever-loser religious leadership God detests.

You know God despises them, because He only gives them defeat, after defeat, after defeat.

  • “By their fruits ye shall know them.”
  • “Tasteless salt, fit only to be ground under the heels of men.”
  • “Worthless servants.”

And for the leadership to change…

…WE must change.

1And, if the Ruling Noble – elected or not – has an effective and loyal staff, that’s all he really needs to do. Just stamp the order with his signet ring, and go back to watching sports on TV or whatever.

2The last time Whats-its-Place was open to the public was during the rule of Chairmen Deng, back in 1989 before what-didn’t-happen happened.

THAT Chinese Communist Party, which truly had nothing to fear from the masses, is dead and gone. We’ll never see it again.

I would put good money that God cut that road off, exactly because Deng aggressively pushed the One-Child Policy.

I can’t prove it… but, I have my suspicions.

3Yes, I’m going to pound the table with the same books again: Stephen C. Peck’s The Christian Passover (where the power-hunger of the Religious Professionals are cut down to size) and Disciple the Nations (as opposed to the unBiblical red herring of building some cultic – and powerless – religious organization or other.)

The curious Christian might want to check out his other books, too.

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Noble Pride

(The bold is mine.)

—<Quote begins>— published a report estimating the military cost of this conflict based on the first four days of losses. And the summary of that report stated that the first four days of the war had cost Russia seven billion dollars based upon the 4.2 billion dollar cost of the lost machinery and a 2.7 billion loss of potential GDP based upon the human casualties.

The report stated that Russia had lost

  • 29 jets at a total build cost of 2.5 billion dollars,
  • 29 helicopters at a total cost of 408 billion dollars,
  • 816 armored vehicles at a total cost of 800 million,
  • 191 tanks at a cost of 450 million,
  • and 75 pieces of heavy artillery,

at a total cost of 117 million.

The human losses in the first four days of this conflict were estimated to be 5,300 for Russia and it was estimated that these individuals would contribute around 500,000 u.s dollars over a period of 40 years to GDP, and therefore the loss of these individuals would have a combined impact of 2.7 billion dollars on Russia. So these figures relate to the direct equipment and people costs.

However, the costs of war are a lot greater than that, and the report went on to give an estimate of the total costs of the war which include logistics, personnel, and items such as ammunition fuel and rocket launches. And when they included all of these items, the researchers estimate of the daily cost of water Russia was 20 billion dollars.

Now at the time of this recording the war has been going on for around 100 days, so if the war has been costing Russia 20 billion dollars per day, that would equate to a total cost of around 2 trillion dollars so far.

Now, 20 billion dollars per day is obviously a very big figure. But if we look at the actual equipment losses that are estimated in the first four days, that figure came in at around one billion dollars per day, so the likely cost to Russia is somewhere between 1 and 20 billion dollars per day.

So if we take a conservative estimate and say that it’s likely to be something like 5 billion, then 100 days of war so far will have cost Russia 500 billion dollars. That’s the investment cost all the people the equipment and everything else that’s going into this, and the key question here is how long is this war actually going to go on for.

If this war goes on until the end of 2022 then that would equate to around 300 days of war and if you’ve got a cost of five billion dollars per day that would be 1.5 trillion dollars. And this isn’t an investment, this isn’t something that’s going to yield future returns, this is just a dead cost literally. And you may be sitting there thinking that it’s impossible that this war could go on for the rest of 2022, but if you look at a direct comparison when Russia invaded Chechnya in 1994, that invasion and war went on for one year and eight months, so it’s very comparable and there is a real possibility that we could see this conflict going on for at least the whole of 2022 and beyond. And if we do, the actual investment cost is going to be absolutely astronomical from Russia’s perspective.

The investment cost of this war is not contained just to Russia and Ukraine. Ukraine is receiving a lot of support from nato and other western nations. […]

—<Quote ends>—

The Imperium, her Nobles, and her Corporations has a rule of thumb: all wars must generate a net profit.
Otherwise, no war.

Ideologically driven nations don’t have such petty limitations.
And get to suffer for it.

Non-Marxist nations understand that prices matter, budgets matter, lost potential & revenue matter.

But while the pragmatically-minded Imperium pays little attention to ideologies/religions, they do suffer from a different problem, Noble Pride.

Russia was only partly driven into this war by ideology: “There is no such thing as Ukraine. There are only Russians who are outside our natural borders.” That may have kept things going for a few days, but not for a year or two.

Mostly, this is a matter of pride, the pride of Putin and his nationalistic backers.

Who are about as ‘nationalistic’ as Nazi Germany and Fascist Japan: the nations under their leadership can be impoverished and humiliated as ever, so long as the Leader gets what he wants.

“What? The Leader isn’t getting what he wants? Well, let’s cut our losses as quickly as we can pour in the money and the blood and the war machines until we run dry, so long as the Leader gets what he wants.”

The Imperial aristocracy is trained to cut their losses, quickly. Usually, they really do do this… which is one huge reason why the Imperium lasted 1,100 years.1

But every so often, that Noble Pride gets in good and deep. Perhaps under the cover of some ideology or other, as per Archduke Dulinor. But usually, it’s just raw family/personal pride.

Which is just a cover of the most natural, most widespread human belief system there is: ” *I* am God, and all reality must bend to MY will, and serve MY desires.”

The smiling snake nods its approval.

Christians would be wise to understand their own flaws, see their own sins. To let even annoying and contrary voices speak, and get out of echo chambers and univocal leadership: “Where there is no guidance, a people falls2, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.” Proverbs 11:14

Humility and service, not pride and power, is the way forward for those who imitate Jesus Christ, King of Kings, who was crowned AFTER His humiliation and suffering on earth.

1All those mercenary groups running around are a side effect of this: “Just rent out the military as you need it, and dump that cost sink after it has served its purpose. Save your people’s blood for when your people’s lives and property are on the line.”

2“A people fall” The Bible is speaking quite literally here, as both Russia and China are huge peoples with vast territories who have been destroyed by a murderous and destructive chain of Mighty Leaders.

The Kingdom of God was established to teach nations a better way. Not just individuals.

(And note that plural, nations. Not some unitary top-down centralized religious imperial tyranny.

*Waves to the Catholic Church.. and the Muslims.* )

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Putting Foolish Ambitions to Rest

While Russia and China share an interest in promoting illiberal values, they differ in certain important respects.  Because Russia has a disappointing record in terms of economic development, they are less interested in the stability of the global economy.  Putin is basically what people on the internet call a “troll”, and sees Russia benefiting from global chaos.  China benefits from a well functioning global economy, albeit with much less liberalism than the West would prefer.  Xi Jinping is confident that China’s power will grow over time as its economy expands and its market becomes increasingly important.  China knows that it will have increasing ability to intimidate other nations.  Putin knows that Russia’s influence is almost entirely due to its military power.  “Bangladesh with nukes”.

Whither sovereignty? by Scott Sumner

Military power really does matter in international politics. But that’s the end of the process, not the start.

“Putin knows that Russia’s influence is almost entirely due to its military power.” That’s over and done with in Europe.

Even after this war, Russia will be able to push around poor landlocked nations in Central Asia for at least a few more decades… until there literally aren’t enough young men to do even that.

Or hold Russia together.

Since the rise of Communism, the Russians focused on what they could see — the material world, all that heavy industry and big armies et. al. — and not on invisible reality, from technology to innovation to the rule of law to free discussion and speech, open criticism (and thus, fast error detection and correction).

Bad call.

“China knows that it will have increasing ability to intimidate other nations.”

Good thing that the Communist Party of China can’t bear criticism from wealthy (but militarily and politically harmless) men… and so, choosing centralized power over decentralized wealth generation, chose to cripple the leading sectors of its information sphere in order to protect its Leninist authority.

A policy that is still ongoing, as wealthy Shanghai is crippled and impoverished to protect the authority of the political centre in Beijing. This time, under the guise of a pseudo-scientific “zero-COVID” policy, instead of being honest as the Party was in the 50s, openly stealing Shanghai wealth to redistribute to the provinces.

In the 50s, the wealth was partly destroyed, and partly redistributed. Today, the wealth is just destroyed.

Couple this with the poisoned land, the rapidly aging population, and the inability to tolerate correction or admit fault (and so, the inability to learn from error and mistakes), and China’s ability to intimidate other nations is on its way down.

Eventually, at a guess in the summer of 2022, most of the foreign expertise in Shanghai will be finally permitted to reach the airports. They will leave, and not return.

The transfer of supply chains from China to elsewhere has already started, but it’s a slow process. At a pure guess, I’ll say it will take five years for most of the high-value, top-end production chains to be transferred elsewhere (the 20% that produces 80% of the wealth), and another five years for perhaps half of the middling, low-value labour-intensive factories to be transferred out.

This will suit the Party fine: China will still retain a good chunk of labour-intensive employment, and the dangerously innovative high-end stuff will be gone. They know that they will never rise to Japan or Korea or Singapore, as this will cost the Party power. Better to become an increasingly poor and ignorant – but obedient and submissive – country.

North Korea is obedient to the Kim dynasty. Its ability to intimidate anyone is nil… but its nuclear arsenal prevents a US-led invasion. So it will be for Russia and China.

People – and nations – really do choose hell over heaven, poverty and ignorance (and total power) over wealth and knowledge (and limited power).


Many Vilani worlds choose poverty and stability. This satisfied the Imperium, which has no problem with worlds with a strictly local focus. It’s the populous rich worlds with serious technology and serious militaries that requires careful Imperial oversight.

Some Solomani world choose to keep/freeze the racial hierarchy, even at a high economic cost – see the segregated American South or apartheid South Africa.

Post Solomani Rim War, the Imperium can afford to bide her time, until some ambitious off-world ruling family, government, corporation, or ideologues decides to hook up the oppressed (but numerous) race(s) with external military and financial assistance.

Finally: the Imperium would rather not imitate Imperial Russia or Imperial China – Red (communist) or Yellow (monarchal). The way of losers is not for her.

Much better is the way of winners, Imperial Rome or Imperial Britain or Imperial America.

“A lighter ruling hand is better. It saves on expenditure, and generates less opposition.”

True enough, as far as it goes.

Best would be to simply stop being a costly empire – the few ruling the many – and simply be a united nation, a la Japan or Poland or Portugal.

But that isn’t possible as the Imperium is not one unified race/culture, and she was not willing to peacefully dissolve into a multitude of sovereign independent interstellar nations, as that would cost the Imperial Core power and wealth.

So one fine day, an Archduke shot the Emperor and his family in the name of Greater Imperial Unity, and the Imperium was burnt down to the ground.

Empires cost too much to run, when you get down to it. Best not to chase foolish ambitions of power in the first place.

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Superior Range

Or, “Tech levels matter”.

As the Russians are learning, painfully. Again.

A mercenary PC artillery battery could be quite interesting to role-play out.

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Sticking With the Nobles and the Corps

The poor ain’t stupid. They may prefer immediate solutions… but they know how cons are run, and they have some canny instincts.

And they may well have sound reasons to prefer immediate pleasures over long-term savings and training, depending on their life-experience.

Self-Interest Isn’t What It Seems: An Austrian Response to Socialism’s Broken Promises by Christopher Paige

—<Quote begins>—

A standard trope in socialist circles is that the poor and downtrodden refuse to vote their economic interests. See, e.g., Thomas’s Frank’s “What’s the Matter with Kansas? How Conservatives Won the Heart of America. This theory is used to justify various anti-democratic schemes to “protect” the vulnerable from themselves. If, after all, the poor aren’t voting their interests, then why can’t we achieve Pareto-optimal interventions on their behalf? 

Indeed, doesn’t this fact generally disprove all economic theory? You can’t very well argue that people are rational when it’s so “obvious” that they aren’t, right?

The problem, of course, with such theories is that they ignore risk. Even if socialism works exactly as advertised, even if all of its “failures” were solely the result of the fact that it hasn’t been “tried,” so what? The mere fact that socialism has failed in the past proves that socialism is risky, and risky investments must be assessed differently. 

It’s all well and good to say that a particular stock doubled just as predicted, but that doesn’t prove the would-be investor made a mistake; we’d have to consider the risk before we could assess the wisdom – or foolishness – of the decision not to invest.

Why then should the poor and downtrodden refuse to vote for socialism – even assuming for the sake of argument that socialism would work to improve their lives? It’s perfectly rational for a person living on the edge to be more risk adverse than the wealth; after all, who’s more likely to starve under socialism (if it fails)? 

Likewise, it’s perfectly rational for a person living on the edge to feel the burdens of failure will fall on them disproportionately; after all, who is more likely to form the firing squads and its victims? Who’s more likely to be in front as well as behind those rifles? Since the vulnerable are more vulnerable, it’s perfectly rational for them to fear socialism more than those who have the resources to protect themselves or flee.

Another more subtle, but important point: who is more likely to have actual personal negative experience with government than the vulnerable? The rich are less likely to have negative experiences with government and, when they do, they interact through superior counsel. The person who lost their car to parking tickets is far, far more likely to mistrust government than the person who can afford to park in a garage or pay their tickets when they don’t; therefore, it’s perfectly rational for the former to mistrust socialism more than the latter.

Note that I haven’t made any fancy assumptions about risk preferences or cognitive biases; rather, I’ve made some simple straightforward assumptions: people who are less able to bear risk are more risk adverse, and people who have suffered losses in a particular investment are less likely to repeat that same investment. Nothing fancy, and – yet – it accounts for all the observed behavior.

Now to be clear, I don’t think that socialists can deliver what they promise, but there’s nothing irrational about the skepticism of the vulnerable. To the contrary, it suggests that they prioritize their own personal experience above academic proclamations, which is the most rational preference imaginable.

—<Quote ends>—

“… it suggests that they prioritize their own personal experience above academic proclamations, which is the most rational preference imaginable.”

I bet the poor not only tend to ignore academic proclamations: they also tend to dismiss royal, religious, scientific, medical, and democratic proclamations when it doesn’t match their experience.

Being weak is not the same as being stupid.

Especially when it is the weak and the poor who will pay the price if Our Betters are wrong, and their Visions and Promises turn to dust and ashes… at best.

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The Elizabethan Age Ages

The Tides Come In

Everybody gets old.

But there is a difference between an old president who rules for a few years a bit older, and then retires, and a monarch – even a ceremonial monarch – who rises when young, and then reigns for decades.

I recall that when Queen Elizabeth II ascended the throne in 1953, her prime minister at the time, Winston Churchill, declared the birth of a Second Elizabethan Age.

Well… that didn’t happen.

As she has no real power, she will have no major legal or governmental mark as her legacy. There will be various minor marks, mainly tied to the ceremonial matters that she could not do and could not change.

There are also the unseen, ghostly roads of decisions not made, actions not taken: for good or for ill.

The Limits of Might and Gold

The legacy of Imperial Nobles – as actual ruling authorities with actual legal, military, and economic power held in their own name and that of their family, their fiefs, their corporate and territorial holdings, and their Emperor – would be much clearer to see.

Ceremonial monarchs, they are not.

But even they will grow old. And they also will see the world they were born in fade away – or blasted to bits – and something new arise in its place.

(Note: this is less true of Vilani nobility, who can and will commit truly enormous resources to hold back the clock, partially or completely, with quite a lot of support from their Vilani subjects. But in many cases even they can only slow down the rate of change, not halt it. )

Everybody gets old. And, in time, everybody dies.

Memories and Legacies

It’s distinctly possible that Elizabeth II will outlive Biden, Putin, and Jinping, though.

Too bad that she will write no memoir. A well-written one with insight would have been a best-seller, examined by historians for centuries.

And a major national security breach that the Queen is far too wise to even consider.

But in the Traveller universe…



World War II was a truly massive global conflict, with many, many leaders getting involved here. Some built their careers on their World War II profile.

And Princess – now Queen – Elizabeth outlived them all.

I don’t think that her political powers are her greatest treasure: I think it’s her memories.

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