13 September 2020

The Best Fencer Problem

The line goes that the Best Fencer in the World is not worried about the second best; they're worried about the worst, because they cannot predict what the idiot will do.

Lots of people are getting a certain distance into the UK government's pro-hard-Brexit stance, and how this is playing out in ways that are going to force the EU to economically isolate Northern Ireland in ways the UK government can then use as domestic "blame the EU" exculpation for the economic disaster of a hard Brexit. (And how this is really rash in a good-governance sense and how it's obviously unlawful and so on.)

People doing this analysis tend to be careful, professional, and knowledgeable; something of a handicap when examining mammonite intentions.  (Remember that the whole point of mammonism is to make a counterfactual a god. It's not sensible stuff, and it's not followed by sensible people.)

What they're after, what the whole "new global trade", etc. is all about, is going after the legitimacy of national borders with respect to trade.

From people who are completely about national borders with respect to the movement of people this seems odd, but remember they've already done this about capital; barriers to entry (or exit) for capital existed in living memory, and the free movement of capital is a problem (if the capital can move freely and the people can't, you've got a system for producing at best serfdom).  But free movement of capital is not enough of a problem if you're a mammonite; the goal of mammonism is to have all the money, and you can't do that if there's a government with the power to tax.  So the government has to go, and part of the incremental project of removing the government is to remove the legal framework for having customs and border controls for goods and services. It's quite likely the plan is to declare that the UK has no customs and border controls, won't create any, won't perform any, and will do nothing except check for legality of residence (which if you don't have, they'll murder you).

This presents something of a problem for the EU.  (Putin wants to get rid of the EU, remember, and is a significant shareholder in the the UK's Mammonism, LLC rebrand of the Conservative and Unionist Party.  This is not solely about a fire-sale looting spree.)  Making the UK implement customs checks requires straight-up conquest; impractical against a nuclear power and permanent security council member.  Insurance blockade, well, difficult; lots of ongoing and annoying enforcement costs.  (Starting with the resulting general starvation in the UK, which will neither affect the the people in power nor look good to the EU's membership.)

There will be US-sourced hulls available to transport UK goods; lots of American mammonites with shipping companies.  The short-term cost-optimal thing is to just not bother with customs checks yourself, but that's equivalent to surrendering the European project, so you have to eat the increased cost and commercial drag, which only gets worse as Trump's second term involves declaring a duties-customs-and-fees holiday for everyone except China.

(Which holiday also bans trade with anyone who doesn't reciprocate.)


heron61 said...

All of this makes much sense, with one exception: "which only gets worse as Trump's second term" doe you think that's going to happen, because from the US it really doesn't look likely - I can provide a wealth of reasons (sadly many come down to the simple fact that a combination of misogyny and 25+ years of nazi attacks hurt Clinton very badly and caused many people to have her, and as a bland white man almost no one (including 75% of Republican voters) hates Biden, and a truly impressive number of people deeply hate 45. Also, Rachel Bitecofer's negative partisanship model performed very well in 2018 and indicated a Democratic victory even before COVID and the near collapse of the US economy.

Graydon said...

@heron61 -- it's pretty clear that the plan is for the various abstract minions to make with the massive voter suppression and for Trump, sometime around seven PM on election day, to declare victory on the basis of an in-person voting lead. The news outlets will dutifully report that Trump has won, and that will be that; all the postal ballots will never be counted. (I would frankly not expect them to be dutifully stored, I think there are at least some states where anything but in-person-on-the-day ballots are being received and shredded.)

They've been working on this for upwards of fifty years now; there were people anguished that Bush pere didn't get a second term because it would have advanced their project immeasurably. What's been done this election is the same play that happened with Bush fils; you know this is bullshit, but are you going to start a civil war over it? Can you?

It's a hard thing to counter. If the Biden campaign has a counter, it's very quiet.

Remember that it's not just Trump who must keep power to keep anything; American prestige is irreparably damaged, the American economy likewise, but not irrecoverably; a recovering America -- one that actually goes egalitarian hard green and picks up the resulting wave of innovation and growth -- is an existential threat to all the mammonites. (Can you imagine President Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez saying "Send a Marine Expeditionary Unit and perform an audit of $TAX_HAVEN"? Because a lot of billionaires sure can.)

heron61 said...

Avoiding this is one reason I'm hoping Biden takes Florida - Florida counts votes *fast*, and there's absolutely no way for 45 to win if Biden takes Florida. Also, while they'll try voter suppression in Florida, it has a robust vote by mail system that both sides are using, which will boost turnout.

Graydon said...

@heron61 -- in general, with elections, the GOP tries something out in a few states and then deploys it widely.

One of the things that happened in 2016 was reporting fictional vote totals. (Georgia, where the response to a court order to cough up the servers was to wipe them so thoroughly forensic analysis couldn't determine anything. Probably Wisconsin, too.)

I expect that there will be a lot of outright fictional vote counts reported in the 2020 election, and that some sort of plan to determine the actual vote and to get it reported quickly would be useful.