If you think there’s something a bit curious about a frothy and pricey stock market existing simultaneously with a global pandemic, Depression-level unemployment, GDP and corporate earnings collapse, freeze-up in world trade, riots by anarchist mobs, devastation of small businesses, and corporate bankruptcies, you might just be thinking that we’re seeing a classic asset bubble blown by the injection of unprecedented amounts of “money” created out of thin air by central banks.
One characteristic of financial bubbles, particularly in their late stages, is a massive pile into the market by small “retail investors”, who bet their modest savings in the belief that “stocks only go up” and “this time is different”. Another sign of a bubble is the emergence of financial gurus, often with unusual backgrounds, proclaiming this “new wisdom for a new era” to their enthusiastic followers.... [Read More]
With all of the disruption and chaos which have transpired since then, I thought it would be worth looking at where the situation now stands in the minds of punters putting their own money at risk betting on election outcomes. Let’s start with the market for “Next President”.
Post examples of corporate and institutional virtue signalling in the comments. Here are a few to get the ball rolling.
Students for the Exploration and Development of Space
We stand in solidarity with those fighting to end police violence and systemic racism against black communities. SEDS-USA pledges to continue using the best diversity and inclusion practices and challenge bigotry internally and externally. pic.twitter.com/UxJxLTvVck
Just five days ago, I posted here “L. Neil Smith: ‘There ought to be a law!’ ” in which the über-libertarian advocated legislation incorporating the Bill of Rights and, in particular, the First Amendment, against corporations chartered by U.S. states as a remedy for rampant censorship and violations of freedom of speech, religion, and free association committed by what he argues are, in every sense, state actors.
Just a few minutes ago, what should I find in my E-mail in-box, but the following:... [Read More]
Roman Catholic Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, former Apostolic Nuncio to the United States between 2011 and 2016, today (2020-06-07) published a letter [original PDF] to U.S. president Donald Trump in which he warns,
In recent months we have been witnessing the formation of two opposing sides that I would call Biblical: the children of light and the children of darkness. The children of light constitute the most conspicuous part of humanity, while the children of darkness represent an absolute minority. And yet the former are the object of a sort of discrimination which places them in a situation of moral inferiority with respect to their adversaries, who often hold strategic positions in government, in politics, in the economy and in the media. In an apparently inexplicable way, the good are held hostage by the wicked and by those who help them either out of self-interest or fearfulness.... [Read More]
L. Neil Smith has, for decades, been the libertarians’ libertarian. Author of more than 30 works of science fiction and commentary, including Down with Power, a practical guide to libertarian policy alternatives in the real world, he has been steadfast in opposing “nerf libertarianism”, which advocates “reasonable compromises” that infringe liberties the authors of the Declaration of Independence and framers of the Constitution considered “unalienable” (which means you can’t even give them away yourself). He, like I, became an advocate of uncompromising liberty through contact with Robert LeFevre, whose life was devoted to promoting liberty.
In the most recent edition of his Web magazine, The Libertarian Enterprise, he offers this suggestion to deal with the accelerating wave of corporate suppression of dissident speech.... [Read More]
In the latter part of the 1980s, the preeminent buzzwords in marketing were “digital”, prompted in particular by the compact disc as a music format, and “turbo”, from the exhaust-powered gizmos auto manufacturers began to use to get more zip out of tiny (compared to V-8s of a few years before) engines. This resulted in these adjectives being plastered on products which had nothing whatsoever to do with either digital technology or turbocharging. In the software world Borland International had a whole line of products called “Turbo Pascal”, “Turbo C”, etc., and “digital” showed up on boxes containing things whose only connection with the word was that they could be operated by fingers. I especially remember ridiculously overpriced “digital speaker cables” which claimed they could better cope with the sound of compact discs.
Well, not to be left behind, I created my own logo in PostScript and started putting it on all of my software projects.... [Read More]
Well, it’s not really new, having been launched on 2020-05-06, but I don’t want to roll out a new group here until it’s accreted sufficient members and posts by them to be self-sufficient, and this one seems to have crossed the threshold.
The Reading List group is a place to list the books you’ve read, as you finish them. There’s no obligation to review them or do anything more than cite the author, title and ISBN so that others who may be interested may buy a copy.... [Read More]
Wikipedia’s “NPOV” is dead. The original policy long since forgotten, Wikipedia no longer has an effective neutrality policy. There is a rewritten policy, but it endorses the utterly bankrupt canard of journalistic “false balance,” which is directly contradictory to the original neutrality policy. As a result, even as journalists turn to opinion and activism, Wikipedia now touts controversial points of view on politics, religion, and science.... [Read More]
SpaceX have released a free Crew Dragon docking simulator which runs within your browser. Simply click the link, read the instructions, and try your hand at it. It’s also fun just to fly around the 3D model of the International Space Station. The simulator is a clone of the user interface used in the actual spacecraft, and the physics of the thrusters and spacecraft are simulated. If you’d like some tips to get started and an example of docking, here is a Scott Manley video showing how it’s done.
If you have an hour and forty-five minutes to spare, here is a concentrated dose of investment wisdom from Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A:NYSE), at their annual meeting on 2020-05-02.
At 21:36 UTC on 2020-04-29 I put a new feature into production which changes the handling of the “Mark all notifications read” item in the drop-down menu from the notifications bubble at the top right of the screen. Previously, this would clear unread notifications and display the Unread Notifications page, which was pretty silly since you’d just asked to mark them all read. Today’s change uses the mechanism implemented to support the “catch-up” feature introduced on 2020-04-12 to mark the notifications read via a lightweight query request which doesn’t replace the page you’re currently viewing with the (useless) Unread Notifications page. After marking the notifications read, the number and drop-down list of notifications are immediately updated.
Before, there was a potential race condition where notifications that had arrived since the last automatic update to the page would be marked read even though you’d never seen them in the drop-down list. This has been corrected: no notification will be marked read unless it has been presented to you in the drop-down list. This means that when you click “Mark all notifications read” you may immediately see new notifications which have just arrived: this is not a bug—it’s avoiding one which was present in the old code.... [Read More]
The film Planet of the Humans, directed by Jeff Gibbs and backed and promoted by Michael Moore, has been released for free on YouTube. Those plugged into The Happening World by joining the SCANALYZER group learned of this hours ago, but here’s an announcement for a wider audience.