Civilization and We (that is, us)
Joe and I have posted information about the “r & K” selection theory of survival in past rants. The strength of a civilization (culture) is determined by the r/K balance. Bill Whittle has been pondering Western cultural decline. He has a talent for distilling complex concepts into yummy bite-size morsels of nutritious logic. He poses the question – “what happened to all the great civilizations – the Greeks, the Romans, the Egyptians, the British – what is happening to us now?” The collapse is brought on by the people of these prosperous societies assuming that affluence is unlimited and permanent – essentially, they switch from a K selective group (the long hard competitive struggle to wealth and prosperity people) to an r strategy (quick and precipitous decline based on false assumptions of unlimited resource people).
This oscillation is the rise and fall of empire.
Q. Is the fall of Western civilization inevitable?
Watch and learn why:
A thought from the presentation – the difference now that wasn’t a factor in the past is that anyone with a cellphone and/or computer and with access to the Internet (all praise the Internet) can broadcast. The common people can communicate directly with one another via the Internet without the bias of the “elite” tainting their access to information or controlling the medium.
No doubt the elite are working (as diligently as they can – which may be a blessing) to curtail this raw Internet power.
The people closest the fire feel the heat most.
No longer does the fish have to rot from the head down.
The emperor’s clothes are more invisible than ever.
The “common man” has more power than at any time in history.
Will these common men and women use the power?
Mr. Whittle is an optimist. Joe and I think he is also pragmatic and realistic.
We do not have to repeat history.
“Social proof” can be overcome (from a Bill Whittle presentation – see 0616 Rant (next week)).
Tell Me a Story (IQ, You Q, We All Q for IQ)
Tell me again O great one, please tell me again.
Where are all the trouble spots in the world?
In 2015 the forces of evil did not take time off. In terms of an overall evil index, Joe and I have no opinion other than to say the human population of the earth continues to rise. Therefore our gut feeling would be the net total incidence of evil is rising but the evil per capita might be a constant. In our more optimistic moments (fewer and farther between) we feel the evil per capita index might be falling.
Of course, this type of enthusiasm can be curtailed simply by seeing more evil.
There’s the rub.
If we are not “at the scene”, where do we get our news?
And at these news sources (whatever and wherever), who is responsible for what news is considered news, consequently newsworthy?
Joe and I spend a lot of time on the Internet looking for data. One of the dependable sources we have found is PJMedia.
Here are three under reported stories of 2015:
Joe is a free speech advocate, without limits. He believes the point of free speech is to protect those who espouse unpopular or disagreeable points of view.
I am also a supporter of free speech without restriction.
The following presentation by Greg Lukianoff of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education discusses the difference between freedom of speech and freedom from speech. The actions of a large number of post secondary education institutions are trending to prohibit free speech by disallowing speech altogether. Need we point out that this is in opposition to the law of the land? This will cause a (further) delay of the maturation / education of the precious snowflakes attending at great fiscal expense, As Mr. Lukianoff notes, intellectual comfort is not a right – freedom suffers otherwise:
When will the West give the finger to the East?
Might as well ask if a duck can fart….
Joe says he told you so.
I say if a picture says 1000 words, what does a moving picture say?
Joe’s philosophy about vehicles is he won’t buy anything that doesn’t need repair.
Further, Joe is a one man rescue and shelter for abused Fords.
Found On Road Dead has a special meaning to him.
Joe is busy building an E4OD automatic transmission for a 1993 F250 4X4 pick me up truck.
The truck developed a severe transmission shudder in 3rd and 4th gears, whether the torque converter was locked-up or not.
The cheapest transmission shop re-build (with 2 year limited warranty) was $3,500 Cdn, transmission. That was with the transmission OUT OF THE VEHICLE. Add another $1,000 for out and in….
Consequently, the vehicle sat for years at Rick D.’s place and in my yard for the simple reason the entire truck isn’t worth the cost of the repair. Joe bought it from Tanner D. with the intention of fixing the transmission and ensuring the truck is dependable and safe. Our current driver is an ’86 diesel F250 4X4 that needs repairs in the near future.
Previous rants had some pictures of the tear-down.
Some obvious problems presented themselves (torque converter clutch slipping, forward clutches slipping) and a few other issues will be resolved with a Trans-Go Tugger upgrade kit, new parts, and a new torque converter.
So what does this have to do with “Free Trade”?
Back in the ’80’s Joe was very excited about lessening the tariffs on parts / items / materials not produced in Canada but heavily taxed crossing the border. Innocent of politics at the time, he thought “free trade” would alleviate the severe $$$ penalty Canadians pay for maintenance and repair of common products.
Here is a picture of the front planet gear from an E4OD that is not re-usable. Two of the planet gears have burnt bearings – the thrust washers are kaput and the needle bearings are toast It is a 4 planet aluminum cage gear set. This is an upgrade from the earlier part (found in the C6 originally) which was a three planet aluminum cage set (top of the line is a 6 planet steel cage gear set – used in diesel / heavy duty applications) –
This is the same gear from another angle. You can see the bearing surface of the center section is scored badly. The planet gears you can see have no thrust washers left – they are burned away. This planetary set is not serviceable and must be replaced –
Which leads to the “free trade” argument.
Joe went to the Ford store in Vernon, Watkins Motors, the oldest Ford dealership in Canada (est. 1914).
The planetary gear set is no longer a Ford supplied part – out of service is the term they use.
Of course, Joe wouldn’t have bought it from them anyway – the last listed price was $785.00 Cdn BEFORE TAXES.
After we picked our self up from the floor, we went home and went shopping on the Internet (all hail the Internet!).
This piece is available all de doo dah day in the good old United States of America for about $120.00 USD.
We know the exchange rate is unfavorable currently.
Joe is speechless. Thank God we’ve got “free trade”.
Can you imagine how expensive it would be if we DIDN’T have “free trade”?
The sarcasm is strong with this one……..
POLITICS, POLITICIANS, WACKJOBBERY, HUMOROUS, STUPID
Joe and I have long held the opinion that language is critically important in the development and success of a culture. Other criteria are also important, such as climate, population density, competition et cetera. Outside of “self”, language allows a person to learn things faster and easier. Indeed, it aids people to learn things that they would not ever “invent” on their own, the ability to learn vicariously.
The following presentation from Eugene Valberg is not for the PC crowd. Professor Valberg has taught and researched in African countries such as Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and others for over 30 years. His book, “Racism, Guilt, Self Hatred, and Self Deceit” is a non politically correct opus on race relations and the differences between the races, as revealed by language.
Joe and I found this talk to be very informative and thought provoking:
WEATHER (OR NOT)
This sums up the Vernon weather scene to date this Winter. –
This week has been mild. The two feet of snow is quickly dissipating. Even saw the sun for some time the last three days!
Tee shirt weather (and sweats).
Joe (sweaty) Mekanic
p.s. Ramirez for the season, from Investor’s Business Daily –