Altherion

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  1. There's an article about this in the generally anti-Trump Bloomberg: I think the antifa and their supporters are underestimating how disliked they are, both in terms of the number of people who dislike them and the intensity.
  2. Don't worry, the Swiss don't like what is called "Swiss cheese" in the US either. Most of the real Swiss cheeses are quite difficult to find in the US because they're made from unpasteurized milk. As to your first statement... I worked there for a few years and from what I've seen, I have to disagree. There are some similarities, but, for example, France is probably more similar to the US than Switzerland is similar to the US. The Swiss do some really weird things (e.g. their nearly unbounded direct democracy or their implementation of jus sanguinis) and, unlike with most places that do weird things, these aren't just idle curiosities -- they're at the heart of the Swiss system and much more important than the structure of the legislature or whatever.
  3. I am not sure that this is true. I played chess competitively in high school and its relationship to war and hunting as experienced by the vast majority of the population is extremely vague. Strategy and tactics are the domain of commanders and there aren't many of them. They're also useful in politics, but again, there are not enough politicians to make much of a difference. Also, keep in mind that most chess players don't come from such families of such backgrounds. There might be a study on this somewhere, but just looking at the Wiki pages for undisputed world champions, Carlsen was the son of two engineers, Anand of a railway manager and a housewife, for Kramnik and Kasparov it doesn't say, but I'm pretty sure their parents weren't military or civilian leaders. Likewise, if your theory was correct, it's would be difficult to explain why Armenia would be the source of so many elite chess players given their recent history (i.e. the past thousand years or so).
  4. I don't think it is a natural phenomenon. Remember, we have a description of it from the perspective of somebody who "disappeared" in one of the prior books. It looks more like a transcendent watchdog entity that sits there and grabs the next thing to come through after a sufficiently massive passage -- predictable, yes, but not natural.
  5. Given that there are roughly 800,000 of them, $11.64B means an average of $14,550 in taxes paid per person. This is significantly above the average for Americans so either there is something skewing the average (e.g. if Warren Buffet walks into a medium-sized bar, on average, everybody there is suddenly a billionaire) or they are significantly wealthier than most Americans or the $11.64B number is bogus. I think the third option is by far the most likely, especially given say, this $14 hourly wage estimate.
  6. Most of the Sanders people were angry, but voted for Clinton anyway. Trump couldn't even manage an outright majority in Utah because a third-party conservative got 20%+ of the vote. I don't think so. Trump earned it by being entertaining -- for some people because they liked him, for others because they thought his campaign resembled a train wreck. Clinton wasn't nearly as interesting. Nobody does it because they know that it will only matter for a small number of people. Most people who are smart enough to understand those detailed plans are also smart enough to understand that most of them aren't going to happen. It takes considerable charisma to pull this off and H. Clinton simply wasn't at that level.
  7. That is the line of the establishment Republicans, but the Breitbart crowd hates the latter only slightly less than they hate liberals. On some issues (e.g. illegal immigration), they might even hate them a bit more. The definition of lawful depends on the people enforcing and interpreting the laws. If Teddy Roosevelt was around, he'd have found a way to deal with them as many of them are effectively monopolies. Unfortunately, there isn't anyone willing and able to take the Big Stick to them. But on the other hand, she did have an overwhelming fraction of the US media on her side, the existence of the "Never Trump" movement and other dissent within the Republican ranks and, last but certainly not least, twice as much money as her opponent. Give me $100M and I can probably hire people to come up with something just as good and with just as much sincerity and just as good an impression that I actually intend to do any of them with plenty of cash to spare. Her most ambitious and most memorable idea was probably in that quote about a hemispheric common market with open borders, but I'd be surprised if she discusses it in her book.
  8. If North Korea actually attacks any ally of the US in a flagrant manner, the US will have no choice but to retaliate along the lines Mathis described and China understands this. The trickier part is what happens if there is some more subtle provocation such as the attack on a South Korean ship that happened a while back.
  9. They are not equally complicit, but they are all part of the same system and each would not be able to accomplish their objectives nearly as well if the other did not exist. Who decides which bias is "appropriate"? Also, they did the only thing they could have -- had they started editing his speeches or whatever, he would have (correctly!) accused them of doing so and it would have made his position even stronger. Look more closely at the 1930s. The issue is not that the antifa can be equated with these (they clearly cannot), it's that the antifa are useful tools to any would-be dictator because they help hone the militias you mention and because they can always be blamed for starting a fight or a fire or something of the sort.
  10. My point was that was a truly massive enterprise -- but even it did not take multiple generations. The situation in the two Koreas is on a significantly smaller scale so I don't think they'd have trouble rebuilding.
  11. I don't think rebuilding is that massive an enterprise -- take a look at what was done after WWII. This would be more resource intensive than, say, the reunification of Germany, but not impossible. That said, there does exist another option which was recently mentioned by the US Secretary of Defense:
  12. Of course not, but in the case of trust in the media, the lack thereof is almost certainly well-earned.
  13. Trump ran a better campaign than most people gave him credit for, but there's no way he managed to discredit the mainstream media -- he did as much as he could, but for the most part, they did it to themselves. You can verify this by looking at the extent to which Americans trust the media. It started declining long, long before Trump.
  14. Not quite. Any one of those words is potentially scary to those who benefit from the current system, but all three of them together are indicative of an incoherent ideological mess that is unlikely to be a threat to the existing order. Of course, the antifa are scary in the same way as any other set of masked thugs is scary, but they lack material support from any broad class of people and they have no means of mobilizing such support. Thus, in and of themselves, the antifa would be minor pests that occasionally violate the rights of some American citizens, but are easily dealt with by the police. However, they do not exist in a vacuum: if you've studied history, you should recognize how such thugs can be used by a more ideologically coherent foe. Fortunately, there is no such entity in the present context, but it is entirely possible that the violence of the antifa is currently helping to forge and temper one.
  15. It did not disappear -- in fact, using the broad definition, it cannot ever fully disappear -- but it was de-emphasized which allowed the set of people that cares about such things to focus on stuff which, if not always helpful, is at least not actively harmful. And there are no progressive groups in the US in the sense that you mean, at least not with any kind of power (the lonely possible exception being Bernie Sanders who is a kind of vestigial remnant). That is part of the article's point: in the US, "progressive" has become nearly synonymous with "politically correct neoliberal".