Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The real basis for capitalism, II -- knowledge

Moral: Wherein we continue the slow trek toward a defensible position in regard to that which we all hope is fair, thereby, hoping to honor Adam Smith and other thinkers.


This topic will take some time as 'knowledge' includes science and engineering, as we would all expect. Too, there is that which has been seriously misconstrued, namely agents and what they (can, think that they, ...) know. We started to look at some issues related to analytics and will get back to that due to its importance and growing presence (ah, that overlord of the mindful).

However, there is another: philosophy. Ah! In the modern age? Well, consider David Hume who was mentioned before as an example, but we'll get back to him.


The New Yorker's review of a book about Adam's work (the review mentions Hume) is worth a read. Notice that Adam knew that 'free markets' lead to the type of state that we see now: a few very large critters owning a very big percentage of the goods (or, in other words, fat cats of small cardinality (LT 0.1%) have their fat hands on the majority of the goods (GT 99.9%) whilst the remainder of us split a very small piece). Adam actually suggested that government has the role of keeping the playing field level.

Free men may gravitate toward markets, yet 'free' markets are not such, for long.

That is, folks, the ca-pital-sino that chases after trains that leave the station is not what we need. Nor is it something that Adam would want us to endure. No, what we see is a gravy train for some.


Consider an old Chinese thought that is the inspiration (basis?) for lazy fare that is so appealing to some. How is such a wonderful, and subtle, idea turned into that twisted idea of those libertarians who want to mangle the works for everyone but themselves?


One thing of note, that will be discussed in depth, is agent as a member of a system. Now, Adam was right to focus on the roles of the agent. Take his example of the coat and all that went into its creation and use. Namely, he stressed that the 'invisible hand' comes about from the actions of the many, mostly with them following the urges of their own self interest. This is a bottom-up view.

But, as we know from science and engineering (middle out), we need top-down. From whence this? Well, the system provides that. And, just how is this defined? Adam would probably say that it's the government's role (however government is defined).

We already talked about how some capitalists think of Adam as the Prophet of their religion of greed. This, folks, is a degradation of that great mind. Let's set things straight, shall we? The fat cats invisible hand is really in a raking mode, from the hapless who are the many to the pockets of the few.

Who has looked at the 'system' aspect? It'll need metaphysics (yes!) as well as neurophysiology, and we'll get there (in our own time).


09/21/2011 -- On Wealth and the CEO MVP.

04/20/2011 -- Simple living (see Remarks 04/15/2011 - game theory), as opposed to greediness.

04/03/2011 -- Need to look at some background. Too, tranche and trash.

01/03/2011 -- Ah, how timely, a Roadmap for Growth. Yes, the golden people demand. Where is our Magna Carta to protect ourselves against these folks?

12/02/2010 -- Banking is a utility (but we also need plumbers - a few, not an army).

11/08/2010 -- Big Ben, the basis that you learned in school, propagated as a professor, and are now trying to demonstrate as a wizard is suspect. You need to know this. Linear logic, et al, can help us discuss the issues. Are you really a proponent of capitalism or ca-pital-sino

?11/03/2010 -- A big oops is emerging.

11/02/2010 --Ludwig, being a product of his time and locality, seems to have thought that the 'elite' would lead the way. Oh, guy, did you really think that? Do we not see that the best-and-brightest are more couple with perdition than not?

10/29/2010 -- Bookstaber on Reich's book. Wonderful commentary, to boot.

10/28/2010 -- Warning, train wreck ahead. What train, I had asked? Yes, there is already a wreck, despite the inflated market (those who lost big are still behind).

10/27/2010 -- Well, we're not the least corrupt, thanks to the screwed up capitalistic framework that has been imposed over the past half century.

10/26/2010 -- One way to know, the media.

Modified: 09/21/2011

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Suckers and sackers

Moral: Wherein we suspend, briefly, the slow trek toward a defensible position in regard to that which stinks. Our goal of honoring Adam Smith and other thinkers will be delayed a little.


After all, we have things like the ergodic hypothesis, and a lot more, to discuss.


In its current mode, capitalism is for the sackers. And, Big Ben, your sacking of the savers plays right into the pockets of the takers. The consequence is that we have a whole slew of new kings (and royalty) who are more problematic than good.

Then, we have the hapless. Suckers, in other words. Those who are led into indentured servitude for themselves and their families for generations.


Wait, is not that what we're doing for the US economy as a whole?

Sackers need an endless supply of suckers to play their game. Why else Wall Street (yes, Ben, and you do know that you play the fiddle for these people?)?

Now, some who were suckered once are really smart and will not allow this again. In the past, cards have generally been stacked for those who are early and get the system made to their liking.


Wait, again, isn't the wild web just full of this? Yes, Zuckerberg (Look, guy, you may not want such but give me a bunch of smart people who can take a simple living oath, and we'll set the economy straight, for ourselves, our children, and their offspring) and a whole lot more.

Be that as it may, let's go to the foreclosure issue. Daily Finance lists what could happen from the current mess. It is worth a read.

However, embedded is a link to talk about a middle class revolt. Now, to hear some who argue for capitalism, they want 'free' markets, almost to the point of anarchy. But, no, not quite that far. Just far enough to push things into their favor and their pockets.

To hear the middle class talk of revolt is troublesome as they (not the fat cats) are the basis for the economy, especially the capitalistic variety. Somehow, we have lost the way.


Capitalism, people, is the best means for us to have a just economy. But, and I repeat, but, 'capitalism' is still to be defined. That is our task.

The pain with the realizations of late results from the fact that some of us thought that the US would be the best environment for this type of economy to happen. Well, people, interlopers have usurped 'of, by, and for' thereby confusing the issues.


A lot of good people have thought about these things and have tried to help matters. But, that we have let the genie out of the bottle with technology needs more attention. Those who are best and brightest, by their nature, want to screw the rest (unless they are simple livers - yes, I can define this). Then, they get the legal eagles on their side, including the courts.


Unfortunately, we may find that last year Obama ought to have nationalized the banks, stopped the high bonuses that were paid, halted the markets, did a full audit, ... (a lot more), ..., and then built up to start afresh. Is it too late?


10/15/2017 -- Post hasn't been touched for four years. Lots of water, many ways. The muddy cloud fell to pieces allowing manipulations through ads (run by money hungry souls - and the power seeking), yet the numb nuts keep at it. Why? Stupid mis-interpretation of Adam plus some idea that commercialization (mercantilization) are it. Lots to discuss.

10/03/2013 -- Oh, yes, two posts (Fed-aerated and 7oops7), but no mention of savers being slapped silly. Notice in the savers post that an image says no bullets left. Ah, yes, Ben panicked and used up his ammo. But, has he not shown all of us (and the world) that there was a whole lot of other maneuvering possible? But, too, does he know that he's cowboy'ed us into a corner?

07/31/2013 -- Ben cannot unwind or taper downhe has too many Doves. We'll have to get back to the king thing (yes, the divine rights of the CEO) and dampening of these types by a new outlook (Magna-Carta'√≠sh).

02/12/2013 -- We ought to have nationalized these guys' playground.

12/22/2012 -- Fair and open actually used in a WSJ article.

11/15/2012 -- SumZero, and more.

09/13/2012 -- Ben, and his cronies, continue to sack the savers

05/09/2011 -- Savers are suckers?

04/03/2011 -- Need to look at some background. Too, tranche and trash.

04/01/2011 -- The last man wants the old days back.

03/16/2011 -- On the rise of the professional politician (will there ever be the citizen polico? that is, those who do not salivate when a buck is passed beneath the nose) toward robber barony. The M & Ms are apropos. As well, need to bring in Schervish's viewpoint.

01/19/2011 -- For the most, things are dire, not by necessity.

10/28/2010 -- Warning, train wreck ahead. What train, I had asked? Yes, there is already a wreck, despite the inflated market (those who lost big are still behind).

10/26/2010 -- Adam knew the failings of 'free markets' quite well.

10/22/2010 -- We need more Orwells and Tolstoys and Perelmans.

10/15/2010 -- How do we get back the 'of', 'by', and 'for the people' in all ways, including the economic system? Perhaps, if we could get Zuckerberg (Facebook), et al, to agree to 'simple living' and we could place trust (engineered, of course, as necessary), then computational assistance could help us all rise out of the morass (especially, that associated with politicos - those who salivate when a buck is passed beneath their noses - somehow, evolution has selected for these types?). To date, the promise of the cyber-physical, especially that represented by the web, has mostly pulled us further into a worse situation.

Modified: 10/15/2017

Friday, October 8, 2010

Ergodic hypothesis

Moral: Wherein we start the slow trek toward a defensible position in regard to that which stinks and, thereby, honor Adam Smith and other thinkers.


Ah, did we ever say that we have the answers?

Last time, we were looking at a constructive basis for capitalism; that goal is still there. However, a couple of concepts ought to be introduced into the argument. These are the ergodic hypothesis and fixed point issues.
  • Ergodic hypothesis -- We mentioned this as a comment earlier, while talking about the problems brought on by misuse of mathematics by the 'quants' view. As the article said, Samuelson noted that bringing in this principle was needed to make economics more scientific. That is, we can solve the game of risk, it is thought.
  • Fixed point -- Deep with the thinking that would apply the ergodic principle is some notion about convergence that may be stronger than warranted. In the large, we do not see much that is really divergent. The sun rises. The car runs down the road that is usually passable, without overly large potholes, and so forth. But, in the small, convergence relies on equivalence.
Now, given that we mentioned equivalence, please note that this is not an easy problem. And, I'm not talking about what 'is' is. You see, any equivalence decision will have been set up within a predefined framework supported by axioms, and other assumptions, in an operational sense. Yet, in order to attain an equivalent choice, all sorts of, supposedly, unimportant properties are thrown out or trivialized into a type of norm.

What do I mean when I say that 'equivalence' is hard. Firstly, the problem is NP of some sort. We looked at that earlier. Secondly, there are undecidable issues involved related to the context.


The basic problem that needs attention is that concepts, like Arrow-Debreu equilibrium, furthers the delusions brought on by mathematization via computation. But, perhaps, that was inevitable; the latter progresses so the former would try to make use of the new facilities.

In short, though, not only do we not have 20-20 foresight (and hindsight) due to undecidability (and more), some things cannot be computed which begs the question of the Church hypothesis which will have to be addressed, to boot.


02/02/2012 -- This post's subject motivated the Ideology series.

04/02/2011 -- Weierstrass did not banish the motivations behind Berkeley's concerns.

10/14/2010 -- Capitalism, as known now, requires an endless supply of suckers.

10/13/2010 -- We'll get back to our itemization, soon. But, cannot resist mentioning that the foreclosure mess is indicative of the types of problems that 'capitalism' will face, especially as it facilitates movement of money from the pockets of the hapless to that of the fat cats. As well, analysis of Paulson, and how he benefited Goldman Sachs - who were rolling in the dough while others lost their livelihoods -- with his actions, and inactions, pertains to the next Remark.

10/07/2010 -- You know what is funny? Those who tend to ca-pital-sino laugh about State planning, to wit the failure of the USSR, etc. You see, these people claim, models, like the Input-output model, are touted as the means for that type of planning. Who can think of handling all that is necessary? But, then these same people see 'the market' as the means (look at the Arrow-Debreu view) based upon what (as in, what the hell is that? the money-sucking methods of Wall Street?)? The invisible hand?

Wait! What's the answer? Well we're getting there, albeit without any compunction about when.

Modified: 02/02/2012