One thousand years of SSH

RealTalk notes that it’s impossible to watch entertainment without seeing some form of the SSH in action:

Random SSH esthetics. S2E11 Big Bang Theory.

  1. Gamma Leonard hateful/jealous of rival Alpha Underhill physicist. Throws lots of shade.
  2. Underhill asks Leonard to work with him. Leonard acts like a school girl who just got asked out. Infatuated by Alpha for the next 5 minutes of the episode.
  3. Alpha Underhill meets Penny, hits it off. Gamma Leonard becomes a hater again.
  4. Alpha proves to be a jerk, and Penny runs back to friend-zoned Gamma for comfort.

Was watching the episode while reading this. I can’t stop myself from seeing through this lens anymore. It’s everywhere!

But the scope of the Socio-Sexual Hierarchy is actually much broader, and much older, than Hollywood. Consider this excerpt from Genji monogatari, written in Japan more than one thousand years ago, in which the refined, sensitive Kaoru is expressing his jealousy of the success the bold philanderer Niou repeatedly enjoys with women.

Women apparently have a weakness for his kind of passionate, impetuous behavior. It makes me sad to think that my relationship with him and his sister, the First Princess, has brought me only pain and misfortune. How sweet it would be to seduce one of these extraordinary women, someone Niou, in his usual fashion, has fallen madly in love with, and have him suffer the same torments of longing that I’ve experienced! Shouldn’t a lady who is truly prudent and sensitive be attracted more to me than to Niou? Yet how hard it is to find women of such refined sensibility!

Is it not almost precisely the same Alpha-Gamma dynamic being described?

Mailvox: patterns of behavior

A reader writes about his experience observing the predictable utility of the Socio-Sexual Hierarchy.

 I recently watched your SSH video and I have been tuning into the Darkstreams more often. The insights about gammas have been surreal as I reflect on interactions I have, a recent one stands out at church.

After service, we took a fellow out to lunch for his birthday. There were six of us, all men, few of us married. I sat across from him, and as conversation built up I asked him (call him Joe) all about his work. He’s a shy guy, slight autism is probably there, but he gets along with and is adored by everyone in our circle. I know nothing about his field, so I asked him lots of questions, genuinely interested, and also ensuring the focus was on him being able to talk about what he loves, after all it’s his birthday. He was having a great time talking about his work, his hobbies, and all of us gave him the spotlight, except…

There’s a guy beside him (call him Gamma) who I didn’t know well but one of the guys apparently had asked him if he wanted to come along. Now, every single time there was a nanosecond lull in the conversation, this guy physically jutted his head forward over the table as if sticking his boot in so you can’t shut the door, and he’d inject something like “So I went to the gaming convention a couple weeks ago, the one that was blah blah.” I mean we would ask Joe about himself, share memories about him and church, but as soon as there was a fraction of an opening, boom! This guy just couldn’t stop talking about himself. It was unreal, I had never witnessed anyone so self-involved, especially when we’re out for lunch treating the guy beside him whose birthday it is!

Several of us were obviously annoyed but no one wanted to ruin Joe’s birthday, we just ignored the Gamma mostly, nodding and smiling as he would go on. When lunch was over, the Gamma asked if one of us could give him a ride home, as he’d come with my friend Alex who was heading back to church to get his wife. We all looked uneasy but one of the guys whose wife wasn’t a part of the event at church said sure. That night, the guy who gave Gamma a ride calls me about some church events coming up, then mentions Gamma. “Dude, he just talked the whole way.” I laughed, but I still hadn’t figured the gamma attribute until my friend said, “I mentioned I gave Gamma a ride to Sue, and she gave me this sour look. She said all of the gals try to avoid him, he’s always trying to approach some of them to chat and they find some way to get out of it.” It really clicked with that, the women thing. They just cannot stand him.

Thanks for being ferocious in exposing the patterns of behavior. It has inspired me to look at myself more often, check what my patterns are. Also, it has been saving me a lot of time from being around men when I notice certain patterns, and can avoid the exhaustion they’ll bring.

Mailvox: sympathy for the dark lord

As his channel becomes more popular, the Kurgan begins to grasp the essence of gammatude:

As my channel slowly grows I am getting a renewed empathy for the level of gamma as well as just general idiocy you deal with, including from some Ilk.

I mean… I’m not exactly what you’d call a very hopeful and optimistic character when it comes to the expectations of rationality from other humans but it’s truly a wonder to behold to what lengths people will avoid the plain facts in front of them in order to keep believing some absurd concept or outright lie they became invested in.

I mean… it’s enough to make me wonder if a lot of humans really aren’t monkeys. Darwin wasn’t right, but he may have stumbled upon a Tolkien-like veracity… possibly Satan makes them orcishly stupid, reminiscent of bonobos on crack.

You have my sympathy given the few orders of magnitude more of volume you deal with.

One cannot understand the core concept of gamma without grasping that the gamma male’s absolute priority is maintaining the integrity of his delusion bubble. Now, every man is capable of being similarly stubborn and stupid about any idea to which he is emotionally attached, but what separates the gamma pattern of behavior from those of other male behaviors is the way that the gamma applies this instinctive response to everything, especially anything that has the potential to threaten his precious self-esteem.

And as for the reference to gammas among the Dread Ilk, keep in mind that being more or less ideologically correct is no defense against a pattern of behavior instilled over the course of one’s formative years. I like to think that the gammas among us have at least a fighting chance to conquer their instincts, given their information on the subject, but that doesn’t change the fact that they are facing a daily battle against themselves that the rest of us will never fully understand or appreciate.

Speaking of The Kurgan’s channel, his methodical destruction of Jay Dyer’s criticism of the Roman Catholic Church will likely be more than a little familiar to anyone who has read one of my systematic critiques. Being neither Catholic nor Orthodox, I have no dog in this hunt, but it is always a pleasure to read through a dialectical argument with this level of attention to detail.

Mailvox: the success dealers

A former candidate for Congress explains how it works:

Back in [REDACTED], I had been moved to righteous anger to run for political office, Congress, in my [REDACTED] district which was being weakly held by a non-progressive Democrat.  There were a number of Republican contenders, but the local party had picked one of their donors, an unfortunate blockhead with inherited money.  I took exception to this and pulled a Trump-to-Jeb! on the dude at every public engagement, which only earned the ire of the local party for my uppitiness and Ron Pauline views on government.

At a fundraiser dinner, I had a small coterie and the other candidates had theirs, larger and smaller, and I was surprised when a delegation of state Republicans – well known and connected – came over and asked me to join them at their table.  I obliged.  They showered me with compliments – how they liked my style, how I was clearly the one with the brains and ability to win etc – and then asked what path I was taking, where did I want to go: executive branch, senate, state politics, or if Congress was my goal.  I told them Congress was where I felt I could be most useful, and they pulled out a diagram that had my name on [a state organization] for a number of years, then county supervisor, then Congress.  They told me that this was not only the path they envisioned, but the path they could guarantee. Their words. All I had to do was drop out and endorse the blockhead. But he’ll lose, I argued, and explained exactly why.  They nodded in agreement and said, we know. That’s how we know you’ll win here in [REDACTED].

They were offering me a seat in Congress if I played their game, changed my views, endorsed their loser, and then they would rig the system to ensure victory. Not MY victory, but THEIR victory with me as their puppet. I told them no, thank you, I was my own man and I’d rise and fall on that merit. They said the doors were always open and then went to the next table where a woman was also running for the same seat. They showed her a different diagram.  Two years later she was the Republican nominee for US Senate.

God was looking out for me.  But the point is that you are absolutely right – there are people who will buy your soul and they roam about like wolves preying on the ambitious, vain, or naive.

I’ve personally seen this sort of thing play out in music, media, politics, and publishing. I’ve heard about it from those who were offered the ticket in Hollywood, both in television and in movies. David Chapelle has spoken openly about the latter… hence Africa. And the modus operandi is always more or less the same. One little knee, one little submission, is all they initially ask of you to give you whatever you want and more.

They are success dealers, and the first hit is almost free….

Keep this in mind if you’re tempted to accuse people of being jealous of those who are wealthier, more famous, or more successful. I can only speak for myself, of course, but I’m not jealous of anyone who has taken the ticket. I know the price they are paying and it isn’t one that I was willing to pay.

Mailvox: a nuanced take

Another perspective on Hong Kong in light of the electoral victory of the “pro-democracy” forces:

To say that the protests are not organic is not accurate. They are organic, it’s just that they’re being used and manipulated by US and UK forces for their own purposes. But Hong Kongers definitely have real grievances, some real and some suffering from a bit of over-active imagination. On the real side is the housing market. Regular people can’t afford to buy a home anymore, and this is a bigger deal in Chinese society than it is in the West. The reason is two-fold: One, real estate is controlled by a handful of tycoons, and Two, Beijing has courted and collaborated with those tycoons. Everyone knows that part of the reason the prices have gone up is because of increased investment from wealthy mainlanders, with whom ordinary Hong Kongers can’t compete.

On the imagined side, the Hong Kong protesters have a view of mainland China which might have come from Fox News, which is remarkable since they live right next to it, and many of them visit on a regular basis. But in talking to them, they talk about China the same way people in America who have never been there and only know what they see on the news talk about it. I don’t quite know why this is. Perhaps because they’re descended from people who fled during the Mao years and heard horror stories about those times. The unfortunate thing is that Beijing could help Hong Kong by intervening in the housing market the way they do in Shenzhen. But Beijing wouldn’t do that, and Hong Kongers wouldn’t accept it if they would. There is a general lack of trust and understanding between the two sides which hinders any solution to the problems.

This is actually very much in keeping with what I have heard from people living there. But while the votes for the “pro-democracy” forces and the protesters are certainly overlapping, they are not the same thing.

I am, of course, extremely skeptical of anything that purports to be “pro-democracy”, as historically that tends to mean little more than “CIA-backed”.

A nonexistent invitation

Thomas Howard leaped to a completely erroneous conclusion subsequent to my invitation to Mr. Fuentes to debate a specific historical event of particular interest to him:

This must mean Nick the knife has finally and definitively turned down the “come join us at unauthorized tv” overtures. Considering his live viewership, nightly superchat support, and the fact he is taken as a serious threat by conservative Inc, this must be quite a blow to the ego. To the gamma, the sting of rejection is like the slow knife, the one that takes its time, which slips quietly between the bones, that’s the knife that cuts the deepest.

Let me be perfectly clear about the relevant facts. Nick Fuentes was never invited to join Unauthorized.TV. Never. Out of about 85 established creators who have expressed varying degrees of interest in joining us at one time or another, precisely three have been invited to join UATV: Dr. Rachel Fulton Brown, Zammy the Giant Sheepadoodle, and Wranglerstar. All three accepted the invitation without hesitation.

I have spoken once to Mr. Fuentes, on May 8th, 2019, for about 20 minutes. We had a good and mutually respectful discussion, in which it soon became apparent to both of us that it did not make any sense for him to join Unauthorized, which is why he never asked to join it and I never invited him to do so. I further note that America First with Nicholas J. Fuentes has 68.9k YouTube subscribers, which is excellent considering that he had around 30k back in May when we spoke. That being said, by way of comparison, UATV’s newest contributor, Wranglerstar, has 1.33M subscribers.

In summary, no one at Unauthorized cares even a fraction of an iota whether Mr. Fuentes wants to be on Unauthorized or not. We certainly wish Mr. Fuentes great success in his campaign against Conservatism Inc., but we neither need nor want him on our channel. Our egos, such as they are, remain intact and unaffected.

Mailvox: Apple and the debt bomb

Forget the good of society and the interests of the employees. The giant corporations aren’t even acting in the interests of their shareholders anymore, if this emailer is to be believed.

I work for a company that was involved in [REDACTED]. It struck me as strange that a company with the cash pile that Apple has – just over $100bn in their last earnings release – would be issuing debt to raise even more cash, so I looked a little deeper and the below may be something relevant to your blog given some of your recent posts on financialisation…

When Steve Jobs died in 2011 Apple didn’t have a single penny of debt, which was unique among Silicon Valley’s tech giants. That lasted not a full 2 years after his death because in April 2013 Apple conducted the largest non-bank bond issuance in history, raising $17bn in debt (as an aside, Goldman Sachs led the bond issue). The justification for this would likely seem counter-intuitive to those outside finance: Jobs’ successor Tim Cook was supposedly under pressure from investors to return some of its cash to shareholders, which meant a program of buying back shares and paying out higher dividends. However, a large portion of Apple’s then $200bn cash pile was held outside the US and if repatriated would face a 35{c8b69934959f35692add933dfd6e84e28f27befea47b321eb3fcbffc0ec5bc03} tax charge, so it made ‘financial sense’ to keep the cash abroad and raise debt in the US at interest rates of c.3{c8b69934959f35692add933dfd6e84e28f27befea47b321eb3fcbffc0ec5bc03} instead to fund this gigantic shareholder return program. Paying out a 3{c8b69934959f35692add933dfd6e84e28f27befea47b321eb3fcbffc0ec5bc03} charge on cash instead of 35{c8b69934959f35692add933dfd6e84e28f27befea47b321eb3fcbffc0ec5bc03} sounds good, right? Apple certainly thought so, as they continued to issue debt over the next few years.

As we know, Trump’s signature piece of legislation so far is his tax cuts bill. It slashed the rate of corporation tax payable on foreign-held cash reserves when repatriated. Interestingly, Apple duly began repatriating some of its cash held abroad in 2017. So presumably it then stopped raising more debt? Nope. Throughout 2017 and 2018 Apple issued more and more debt to fund payouts to its equity investors. This brings me back to this month’s ‘Green Bond’ issue – the largest of its kind in Europe. Putting aside the virtue signalling aspect of issuing a ‘Green’ bond (the idea is that it’s used to fund initiatives designed to reduce Apple’s carbon footprint), it appears that Apple has become addicted to debt. In short, just 8 years on from Steve Jobs’ death when they were entirely debt-free, Apple now owes around $106bn in debt and pays out around $3.5bn annually in interest payments alone.

There is literally no business case for Apple to be taking on such debt. It is simply sucking cash out of the company. It does not need to raise cash to invest in R&D, hire new staff or expand its business. If you read through the FT, Forbes etc., the best explanations are that “debt right now is cheap, so they may as well raise cash this way to pay shareholders”. Apple themselves state the reason for issuing debt is for “corporate reasons” according to their Italian CFO, i.e. nothing related to creating productive value for the firm. They now hold slightly more debt than cash – a remarkable turnaround for a company that was once debt-free and held over $200bn in cash at its peak. Even more alarmingly, Apple has issued releases saying that they intend to become a “cash neutral” company, i.e. it will pay out any excess cash to shareholders and debt holders, and given Apple’s ever-increasing debt pile it therefore looks as though the lenders will be milking the firm for years to come. The debt vampires have well and truly sunk their teeth into Apple.

There are plenty of arguments one can make on this, but one wonders whether any of this would have happened if Steve Jobs was still alive and running the company.

Why we do what we do

A supporter of the Junior Classics 2020 edition observes 60’s-era convergence:

My father in law recently gave us a 1962 edition of the Junior Classics that was sitting around his house. All female editors with a corresponding convergence in the stories included therein. Still some good stuff by today’s standards, but the rot was well established by then.

I’ve never seen that edition, having grown up on the 1958 edition, but I’m not even remotely surprised. Preserving knowledge, teaching children, and taking back cultural ground. The objective is right there in the name.

Speaking of the intellectual offensive, if you emailed about your interest in the Castalia Deluxe subscription but haven’t signed up yet, this is the time to do so. I don’t know if we’re going to close subscription sign-ups for the even months or add a sign-up fee during those months, but regardless, we want to pass 50 percent before we place the initial order with the bindery. Right now, we’re at 32 percent, which isn’t at all bad for the first 18 hours, but we can certainly do better.

Mailvox: Converging the Mustang

American automotive buffs are not happy with Ford permitting its new electric vehicle to wear the Mustang brand as a skinsuit:

Recently Ford revealed a new all-electric 4-door crossover SUV. Then labeled it a Mustang Mach E. There is a 50min video of the reveal on YouTube. In the comment section people are seeing the complete inversion of an iconic car brand and they’re not happy about it.

Based on the diversity hires shown from the design team, I’m not surprised they have no understanding of the Mustang brand.

I look forward to reading Corporate Cancer soon.

Although I’m not an American muscle car guy, I can sympathize. I wasn’t happy when Ford acquired and trashed the Jaguar brand either. But seriously, diversity or not, how hard is it to grasp that a Mustang is a sports car, not A 4-DOOR UTILITY VEHICLE?

Speaking of Corporate Cancer, the paperback is now available at Amazon and at a discount at Castalia Direct.

It may interest readers to know some of my predictions in the book are already coming to pass, such as the continued targeting of the Internet giants by national tax authorities.

The Czech government approved a seven percent digital tax proposal on Monday aimed at boosting state coffers by taxing advertising by global internet giants like Google and Facebook, the finance ministry said. The tax would apply to companies with global revenue over €750 million ($826.5 million) annually, 100 million crown ($4.32 million) turnover in the Czech market and a reach exceeding 200,000 user accounts.

Mailvox: atheist biology

Richard Dawkins’s logic is not only flawed, but as Warkicker, an accomplished surgeon, notes, his grasp of animal and human biology is also nonexistent.

MORE ATHEIST LOGIC: You can trust atheists. Because evolutionary biologists don’t understand how biological functions work.

What a curious argument Dawkins gives regarding the “poor design” of the recurrent laryngeal nerve. Is he not aware that the nerve does more than innervate the larynx? It gives branches to the cardiac plexus, esophagus and trachea in addition to the muscles of the larynx. Hence its circuitous route is necessary and not inefficient. I do thyroidectomies all the time and have to be careful not to injure any part of the nerve during the dissection, not just the branches that serve the larynx. Also, the superior laryngeal nerve does give a direct connection to the larynx, and complements the recurrent laryngeal nerve and provides redundancy in function, so a more direct pathway already exists.

There are unusual conditions in which either the right or left recurrent laryngeal nerves do not loop around in the chest but rather directly innervate the larynx. In such individuals, there is the potential for significant problems in swallowing and breathing. Ironically, if you subscribe to the evolutionary paradigm, such conditions may represent example of mutations that regularly occur but yet evolution “chooses” not to select out for the more direct route!

Additionally, the long route the recurrent laryngeal nerve takes into the thoracic cavity before looping back up to the neck may have saved the lives of many of my patients. They will present with hoarseness prompting me to look at their vocal cords. If I see paralysis of one of the vocal cords, I evaluate their chest and often with find a tumor in their mediastinum, usually early enough to still be treatable. Dr. Michael Egnor, a well-known neurosurgeon, has noticed and commented on this as well.