Friday, February 10, 2017

pampered peasant book 1

note: well written book on military life.  Nothing has changed except for the worse since I was in lo these many moons ago.

“The Alpha Strategy” was a book back from the ‘70’s or ‘80’s that dwelt with the strange new first ever end of the Industrial Age for this country.  While our country certainly didn’t spring forth as a result of the new carbon fuel economy, it had so many resources to get itself started that the Revolution to a certain extent did seamlessly merge into manufacturing.  Okay, we had to fight a civil war to place those pesky farmers in their place ( I mean, come on!  Swamp plantation owners equal to genteel Yankees?  The nerve!  We’ll just throw the German and Irish immigrants into battle to defeat those uppity negro owners and at best they can hope to be the new overseers of our brand spanking new colony.  Then we’ll claim it was all about freeing the colored folk to mask our robbery.  Hell, we hate those people more than the Southerners-even have laws on the books making it illegal for them to live up here with us WASP’s.  It will be a good joke on everyone ) and get the powers of government behind industrialization.  It doesn’t really work otherwise.


The first industrial economies were mercantilists and central banks created financing so rather than capital for investment you merely needed the interest payment amount.  Colonies provided the free resources ( with just a few soldiers to guard your investment ) and civilians provided both the taxes to pay the loans used for industry but also the warm bodies for the cannon fodder.  If you were at the top of the government, banking pyramid or corporate ladder, it was a sweet deal indeed.  Now, after a few shaky starts, the elite noticed that if they didn’t allow about 10% of the total wealth they grasped in their greedy little corpulent fists to trickle down to all the worker bees, unpleasant things like revolutions occurred ( such as the French one, where the idiots thought the peasants starving would lack the energy to fight.  The American one was not about the little people revolting but the indigenous elite using the masses to wrest control from the original elite.  They dressed it up in patriotic glitter and it works so well that even today those screeching about retaining their rights call for its repeat.  So, I suppose, they voted for Trump who is all about money-but he is crass enough to pass for an un-elite ).


The wonderful thing about our one off carbon fuel supply economy is that, hey, even just 10% of the wealth for the other 99% of us still is a GIANT amount of treasure.  It got everyone a job ( starting during the Great Depression, most jobs were government backed.  Like all mobsters, the government collected a third of the paycheck as a bribe for us to keep the job.  Since then, little has changed other than we don’t work for the civil service but for a “private sector” nicely disguised by being a layer or three removed from Uncle Sam.  But the majority of jobs are from the imperial masters or the local lackey’s ) and a car ( only after the peak of oil has it become difficult for everyone to own a vehicle-even ghetto dwelling minorities ) and central heat and air and multi-channeled television.  The proletariat was mostly satisfied ( when the Blacks got peeved about lack of equitable sharing, we shoveled bribe money into the ghettos before the ashes from the buildings burned in protest even cooled down ).


The problem with our empire at that time was that it was founded on manufacturing.  Every problem relied on throwing goods at it.  And then, suddenly, we saw a decline in the increase in energy to manufacture.  And just as suddenly, our entire growth based manufacturing economy was taking a Big Flush.  All it took was a slight decrease in our oil supply, and everything came to a screeching halt.  The war in Vietnam, the space program, our entire economy.  At the time, The End Was Nigh.  Luckily for us, we had some smart folks behind the curtain who seemingly already had the answer, and that quick our economy went from domestic energy and manufacture to foreign energy under our control and exported manufacturing which were paid for by the same worthless paper currency we got to use for that imported energy.  Instead of working hard at manufacturing machines, we sat behind a desk and pushed the button on a printing press. 


Well, as you might imagine, there was suddenly no need for factory workers.  Again, almost seemingly overnight, the machines were shipped overseas, mass layoffs became the norm and a few math nerds in California saw a great market for robots and software that would displace the remaining manufacturing jobs as quick as possible ( so, yes, Silicon Valley was the epicenter for hollowing out the remaining employed after the ’70’s-and we celebrate their brilliance.  We really are embarrassingly retarded.  He says as he types and publishes electronically ).  It wasn’t all catastrophic.  We had Saudi Arabian, then Alaskan and North Sea, them immediately following, Siberian gushing free oil to keep enough wealth in the hands of the 99% to keep our financial economy afloat.  That ended when the Great Ponzi Scheme Of ‘00’s imploded.  But we get ahead of ourselves.  Back forty years ago, as our industrial economy was imploding, the only way of life anyone knew was suddenly over.  A book on how to beat the death of manufacturing was most welcome.


Most of that book was economics, but one section was on stockpiling industrial items, manufactured goods.  It was a strategy for beating inflation by stocking as many long life items as possible for as long as possible, hence saving the difference in consumer items costs.  In retrospect, for someone with way too much time on their hands and a vivid imagination, it seems to be subliminally a way to beat the end of our factories.  With a lifetime supply of light bulbs or tinfoil or whatever, you didn’t need to be as concerned the oil was running out and the industrial economy was ended.  Next time, introduction continued.


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  1. If you want your historical views to be taken seriously, she should stick a little closer to reality.

    All States in 1860 were farm states. The states that rebelled were the States that had a vested interest in the plantation economy. Small farm North Carolina is the last to succeed, and possibly would not have, except it was by then surrounded by Confederate States.

    The slave states that did not succeed supplied more troops to the Union then they did to the Confederacy. Hardly a sign of slave holder unity.

    During the war, the Union eventually came to use the strategy of "freeing" slaves that could make it to Union lines. This is the same strategy the British used in the War of 1812 (the British did not emancipate all slaves until 1833, so they didn't have issues with slavery per se). The Emancipation Proclamation comes from this reasonably effective tactic.

    As the war went on, both sides started running out of cannon fodder. Both sides recruited black units into their army, though it is fair to say they were more integral to the Union effort.

    It is not clear what the South would have done with the many blacks who were part of their armed forces. One suspects it would have been a major problem for them.

    However, in the North as the war kept on going, the more radical elements of the Republican party gained influence. They also had to figure out what to do with all the ex-slaves that they had on their hands in addition to the ones who were fighting.

    I think it is fair to say, that after all the fighting, there was not a lot of sympathy for the plantation class. So nobody was all that excited about putting them back in power. By this point in time, the bubble which was the cotton boom had already burst. The British in the future would be getting more than enough cotton from India. So the plantation folks were facing a huge debt load with a declining revenues. Without the war, there would likely still have been slavery, but the planters were going to go bust regardless.

    If the Southerners hadn't been in such a hurry to attack Federal forts (primarily Sumter), and simply waited for the troops to leave when they ran out of food. It's actually hard to see how Lincoln gets enough support to start invading the South. Maybe he does, but the Confederate states behavior made it really easy for him. So the "innocence" of the Southern States is a little muddy.

    1. I'm not really sure where we have a fundamental difference of opinion on history. I don't disagree with what you stated, and I'm not sure where we clash on our views. Southern elite in the form of the plantation owners were just as bad as the Union industrialists in using war for their own ends, but it was the Yankees that colonized the South and not the other way around. The Southern elite might have got their commupence but they dragged down all the rest with them. So in the end we went from a minority owning to slaves to the majority being colonized by the Yankee elite. I'd say in the end the South was less evil. Also, the North was seeing mechanization to some extent in farming ( McCormick reaper? ) and was able to free farm labor for the fighting.