Thursday, January 21, 2016

A Quick Run Around the Web--January 21, 2016


  • First up, some more Shot Show 2016 news:

    • (Source)

      ... The western world is going out of business because it's given up having babies. The 20th century welfare state, with its hitherto unknown concepts such as spending a third of your adult lifetime in "retirement", is premised on the basis that there will be enough new citizens to support the old. But there won't be. ... 
      Enter Islam, which sportingly volunteered to be the children we couldn't be bothered having ourselves, and which kind offer was somewhat carelessly taken up by the post-Christian west. ... 
      Last year, Angela Merkel decided to attempt it. The German Chancellor cut to the chase and imported in twelve months 1.1 million Muslim "refugees". That doesn't sound an awful lot out of 80 million Germans, but, in fact, the 1.1 million Muslim are overwhelmingly (80 per cent plus) fit, virile, young men. Germany has fewer than ten million people in the same population cohort, among whom Muslims are already over-represented: the median age of Germans as a whole is 46, the median age of German Muslims is 34. But let's keep the numbers simple, and assume that of those ten million young Germans half of them are ethnic German males. Frau Merkel is still planning to bring in another million "refugees" this year. So by the end of 2016 she will have imported a population equivalent to 40 per cent of Germany's existing young male cohort. The future is here now: It's not about "predictions".
      Skulls smashed by blunt force, bodies pin-cushioned by projectile points and hapless victims—including a pregnant woman—abused with their hands bound before receiving the fatal coup de grâce.  
      This violent tableau resembles something from the darker side of modern warfare. But it instead describes the grizzly demise of a group of African hunter-gatherers some 10,000 years ago. They are the victims of the earliest scientifically dated evidence for human group conflict—a precursor to what we now know as war.
      The battered skeletons at Nataruk, west of Kenya's Lake Turkana, serve as sobering evidence that such brutal behavior occurred among nomadic peoples, long before more settled human societies arose. They also provide poignant clues that could help answer questions that have long plagued humanity: Why do we go to war, and where did our all too common practice of group violence originate?
      While interesting, the find should in no way be surprising. Instead, I'm disappointed at the perpetuation of the myth that warfare is, somehow, modern. As for where our practice of group violence originate, simply observe primates--or any animal, for that matter--in the wild.
      In a project titled “The Counted,” the Guardian is tracking killings by police in the United States and has compiled a comprehensive list for the year 2015. The tracker was motivated by much-discussed but poorly founded concern about excessive use of police force particularly against blacks. In December, police killed 92 people — 21 blacks, 40 whites, 17 Hispanics/Latinos, five Asians/Pacific Islanders, and nine of unknown race. Fourteen were unarmed, including five blacks. Those who were unarmed reportedly still posed other types of threats to officers. These threats included physical violence and ramming officers with a vehicle.   
      Most of these reports are based largely on the accounts of eyewitnesses and the officers involved and so might not include all relevant details, such as results from ongoing police investigations. But the available facts fail to support the claim, made most prominently by the movement Black Lives Matter, that police systematically target unarmed black men. Of note among those who were killed is, however, the prevalence of mental illness. 
      • "F-35 lost out to Su-35 in combat simulations..."--SNAFU. "The purchase of additional SU-35's now indicates something.  I've speculated earlier that it means that [the Russians] feel that its more than capable of taking on the F-35.  This article confirms my suspicions.  Which leaves the question...if the F-35 can easily handle the F-35 then why proceed with the PAK-FA?  My thinking is that they're seeking overmatch." Why is the Pentagon hanging this albatross around our neck? As William S. Lind as noted, the primary purpose of the Department of Defense is acquisition, not defense; and the F-35 is expensive....
      • "World faces wave of epic debt defaults, fears central bank veteran"--The Telegraph. (H/t Bayou Renaissance Man). 
        The next task awaiting the global authorities is how to manage debt write-offs - and therefore a massive reordering of winners and losers in society - without setting off a political storm.
          Mr White said Europe's creditors are likely to face some of the biggest haircuts. European banks have already admitted to $1 trillion of non-performing loans: they are heavily exposed to emerging markets and are almost certainly rolling over further bad debts that have never been disclosed.
            The European banking system may have to be recapitalized on a scale yet unimagined, and new "bail-in" rules mean that any deposit holder above the guarantee of €100,000 will have to help pay for it.
            Read the whole thing.

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