Wednesday, April 29, 2020

How Censorship (and Stupidity) Will Destory the Future Economy

I was waiting patiently for the idiot at  Wyoming Subway to fix my sandwich right.  By this time I had lived in Wyoming long enough to know the people are slower, dumber, and less competent than the average American, and though a gun-lovin', no income tax, libertarian state, the people were so stupid I developed an intense hatred for them, nearly on par with my hatred for communists.  Still, at the mercy of the "Sandwhich Artist" to get my sandwich right, I sat there patiently, correcting him on my order three times.

I had noticed I had to correct Wyomingians about three times to get things right once.  My dentist rescheduled my appointment three times.  I had to call the landlord three times to get the water heater fixed.  I had to call suppliers, clients, and co-workers at my job three times before getting the information I needed.  And if it only took you twice to get what you needed from a Wyomingian that person likely graduated valedictorian from their local high school.  This is what I would term "The Wyoming 3" as it would take you three times to get anything done.

The incredibly damaging problem with "The Wyomining 3" is that it takes three times the resources and labor to get one task done no matter how grandiose or small.  And when leveraged across the state as a whole, you realize people are wasting three times the amount of time, money, and labor, that could (in theory) go to boost economic production (and the wealth of Wyomingians) by three fold.  Admittedly, this was not some key to economic success.  All people all across the world need to ask the same question for clarification.  All people all across the world are going to goof up from time to time.  But what I was seeing was arguably the main difference between a first and second world economy/country - dumb people making dumb mistakes repeatedly, thus taking twice/thrice the amount of time and economic resources to get the same amount of economic production at every level of human interaction (you know, like majoring in the liberal arts, only to have to spend the time and money to major in something worthwhile the second time).

It's been nearly 10 years since I lived in Wyoming, but unfortunately over those 10 years I have seen the "Wyoming 3" phenomenon spread to the regular population.  Wives ask their husbands a variant of a question three times, hoping to get the answer they want, when the answer remains the same.  Students are going back to college for master's degrees, worthless second bachelor degrees, or participating in some kind of "essential oils" MLM scheme to make a living (instead of learning to code).  Yes, now nearly everybody has to give the Sandwich Artist their order three times whether you're in Casper or Chattanooga.  And people are looking at their cell phones at red lights, failing to notice when the light turns green, delaying the rest of us at three times the rate.  And so, slowly, but surely our economic growth slows down, our entire economy slows down, and we descend from a first world nation to a high-level second world nation.

But the costs of the "Wyoming 3" does not stop there.  Matter of fact, it has spread to what is the largest-fastest growing sector of our economy - technology.  Specifically, social media and big tech platforms.  And as the "Wyoming 3" infects "big tech" it severely limits our future potential economic growth.  And the way it does this is in two innocuous but incredibly damaging ways

1 - Clicking the mouse, and
2 - Censorship

Joke as I might, there is more than a seed of truth to the statement that "all we're going to do in the future is log in and click mice."  As the economy has become more automated and focused on social media/digital entertainment and higher and higher percentage of our time is merely spend logging in and clicking mice.  Yes, there will still be trades.  And yes, there will always be the wait/service industry.  But if you are a white collar person an increasing percent of your labor will really boil down to logging into various accounts and clicking mice.

But what has happened because of stupidity is the number of accounts you need online to work or conduct life, the number of "usernames and passcodes" you need to remember, and the number of times you need to "log in" has increased exponentially lessening the amount of work you actually can get done.  Worse, when you throw in the infernal and incessant number of times you need to unnecessarily click on items to get to where you need to go, today's productivity has tanked and future productivity will be further restrained.  These "unnecessary items" can be anything from pop up windows, to clicking on "yes I accept your fucking cookies," to every damn company posting an unnecessary "We're here for you during COVID 19," to "no, I don't want to take your fucking survey."  They may seem small and innocuous at the time, but overtime they add up to a significant economic loss, because some stupid person infected with "The Wyoming 3" needed to let you know what they're doing to help fight off COVID 19 or was trying to fix something that was not broken.

The second, though no-less damaging way "The Wyoming 3" limits future economic growth is through censorship.

Without boring you with a long and sordid economic explanation, as we automate more and more things in the economy, a bifurcation of the labor force will occur.  You will have people who maintain the automated economy (programmers, engineers, mechanics) and essentially a service industry class that provides human services to the population that robots can't (wait staff, manicurists, hair dressers, therapists, surgeons etc.).  But among this service economy, the largest segment of it will inevitably be entertainers.  Entertainers employed through social media.  This only makes sense as with cars, food, housing, and computers being made by AI/robots, there will be less demand for skilled manual labor, but with all this extra free time people will both produce and consume increasing amounts of social media, finding both employment and entertainment in social media (which has already happened). 

Though it might be a stretch in many people's mind that social media and online entertainment will be a large and growing sector of the future economy, I predict it will.  And thus anything to limit that production will cut into future potential GDP growth.  Things like...oh...I don't know...incessantly having to click on "Yes, I accept your fucking cookies" and maybe.....censorship?  And as big tech limits who and what can create what on their platforms, we are going to seriously limit the future economic potential of the world. 

Allow me to tell you a story.

I run a fun little podcast called "Good Morning Coronachan" in addition to other podcasts I produce.  It received a significant and loyal following that I decided I would start offering merchandise with the logo on it (coffee mugs, t-shirts, etc.).  I then went to RedBubble (which I STRONGLY advise you don't) as they were highly rated as one of the best "print on demand" merch sites.  I set up an account, logged in with my username and password, uploaded a logo, and hit publish.  Everything seemed to be going fine.  I even had a couple of sales within the first 24 hours.

That was until RedBubble decided my image violated the TOS and took it down.

This was confusing to me because the image was neither pornographic nor rated R.  It was not political or controversial.  I even marked it as "mature" since it was a pinup girl in a risque outfit.  But like any other image, photo, video or podcast taken down by "big tech" there was no reason it was taken down other than some Karen, some censor, some prick didn't like it and decided to take it down.  And thus something that was already generating economic production in a mere 24 hours of it being produced, was ended because Barren Karen in the Censor Department at RedBubble was infected by "The Wyoming 3."

Though a single anecdote, when you multiply this by the hundreds of millions of people that live in the US and the thousands of decisions they make every day, each Karen at Redbubble taking down an image, each censor at YouTube taking down a video, each Sandwich Artist in Wyoming throws a couple grains of sand into the economic engine of the US.  And though no single individual censor brings the social media sector of the US economy to a screeching halt, a million cuts by a million Karens can kill this sector of the economy in due time.  And thus the hour and a half I put into setting up a simple merch account that was wasted, will be wasted 10 million-fold as millions of future micro-entrepreneurs try to do the same.

When you combine these three things:

The Wyoming 3
The Eternal and Forever Unnecessary Clicking of the Mice
Big Tech Censorship

you make future economic growth practically impossible.

The general population is already too slow and too stupid to get things reliably done, the right way, on time.  To get what things you can get done and produce an modicum of economic growth is further and forever hampered by companies and websites requiring you unnecessarily click on "logging out...are you sure you want to log out???  Are you really really really sure you want to log out?????" And should you be part of the growing social media sector of the economy, the literal army of censors, headed up by the Barren Karens of the world, are going to arbitrarily nix your creative contributions denying you employment, your audience entertainment, and the economy GDP.

It is already tough enough to support oneself in this world given the unnecessary hurdles society lays in front of us.  And there's nothing that can be done about the incredible stupidity of your average American.  But Big Tech can do the future economy of the world a huge favor by getting The Stick of Nazi-Censorship out of its ass and allowing people to be free to express themselves however they want.  But something tells me the Barren Karens of the world need something to do with their Political Science degree, and that trumps the free choice and entertainment of the American public.

Oh well, Enjoy the Decline!

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Tucanae Services said...

Couple of observations:

* The most insidious is the 'accept cookies' banner on websites. You can thank the EU for that one, not a WY3 trigger.

* Get yourself a keystore app and use that to maintain your login/password data. DON'T let the jerks on the website store it for you on on general security principles.

* You can blame management for many WY3 events. People aren't trained. Processes are not designed to eliminate error. Nothing is written down. Executives assume incorrectly that people are widgets and interchangeable. That is driven by the MBA's trying to optimize everything to the LCD. I have been to a couple of Subways that have solved the ordering problem. They have ID'd options/selections onto a long card. Buyer checks off items, hands it to the clerk. The counter staff then just assemble it. No miscommunication.

* Even high skill people can F'up. Walk into any McDonalds and attempt to order ala-carte off the kiosks that are installed. Its buried 5 levels deep as they are trying to do the upsell on the kiosk. Its to the point I don't even try to use them. Compare that with Chili's on at table app. The upsell is a single attempt and then it is a reflection of their printed menu. Order, updates and payment are a snap.

* Keep in mind something like 15% of the population has an IQ less than 90. They may never be able to properly function in a high skill society.

Tommy 'Sterilize 'Em All' Douglas said...

Guys at work, mostly my bosses, ask me why I yell at them all the time.
I tell them that it's because that's the only time they listen.

Literally telling them to pull their heads out of their asses and do their job seems to get through to them once in a while.
What helps with that is explaining to them that if they fire me for calling them idiots then during the hubbub after my firing their bosses are going to learn all the details of their incompetence and stupidity and laziness that prompted me to yell at them in the first place.
And I get things done, so they have to put up with me.

And you know the old rule about how you shouldn't say "I told you so"?
Well I never subscribed to that rule.
It's like training puppies, you have to rub their noses in it.

Anonymous said...

I just noticed today that Pop Tarts are smaller. The nickel and diming away of our time and life is manageable when it is solely the Wyoming-3 but it feels like the whole world is quickly careening into mediocrity.

Thanks for the great content. It is reassuring to hear sanity from time to time.

Anonymous said...

Brilliant insights, as usual, Aaron.
Unfortunately, too long to wade through for those who most need to read it.

Grizzly said...

I live in Wyoming and I've never experienced this. If the author of this article doesn't like Wyoming then I guess he's perfectly free to leave.

sassed1 2many said...

At the height of my IT career, I've owned more than 500 user IDs.
The compliance requirements have become inscreasingly onerous since 2010.
The current password requirement for an administrator is now 21 characters.
The auto screen lock is a mandated at 15 minutes.
User time out intervals have been shortened, and engage as quickly as from 5 minutes.
The number of egregious crimes against humanity are literally endless...

Stacey said...

Great post as usual.

What does the chan in Coronachan mean?

AM Apprentice said...

If you hate the people of Wyoming that much, please sell your land and leave for their sakes and maybe yours. There is nothing worse than an outsider that has complete contempt for you and your people moving into your territory. I know you want the big land and beautiful views, but they were there first. Don't think for one second that you are not an immigrant just because you moved within the United States.

Vader999 said...

Sometimes you need destruction in order to bring balance and new growth. New growth cannot exist without first the destruction of the old. Take the video game industry, for instance. Back in the day, companies like Atari dominated the landscape, until they and many other companies basically drowned the market in games that were subpar. This led to a video game crash that killed the industry for the time being, until new players on the block like Nintendo and later Sega picked up the pieces and rebuilt the industry into a vibrant, healthy market. Later, other competitors like Sony and Mircosoft, as well as the burgeoning PC market, added more flavor and choices for the people. It's possible that such things wouldn't have happened if it weren't for that video game crash. And now, with the stagnation of the AAA market of games, it seems that the industry is headed for another crash, but it could be a good thing, considering that AAA companies like EA and Activision have become too greedy for their own good, and them falling apart so that others can take their place could be a good thing.

We can also see the same thing happening to the comic book industry right now. Forget those Comicsgate losers, here's the truth: the mainline superhero comic books before the SJW incursion were failing. Some of them were good, akin to pearls in the mud, but most of them, outside of the niche stuff like Transformers and Star Wars, were trash. Plots that went nowhere, retcons up the ass, and revivals that made the Dragon Balls look positively tame by comparison, to the point where death is practically a temporary vacation for superheroes. This basically made it impossible for regular people to relate to these heroes, what with confusing continuities constantly being reset, to deaths being a joke, to plots being red herrings, it was anathema to good storytelling. The best comic books were either ones that kept to an unchanging continuity like the old Expanded Universe Star Wars, or one-off stories like Watchmen. Comic book superheroes were going through one mess after another, down to the point where DC comics almost gave up the comics side of their industry to Marvel, and Marvel filed for bankruptcy.

The industry was on life support ever since the crash in the 90's caused by a buttload of alternate covers that they tried to sell to the speculator market. Comic fans keep denying it, but the fact is, SJWs were easily able to take over because comics in media was such a weak thing, that the companies behind DC and Marvel don't mind losing the faithful few who buy their comics in favor of SJW brownie points, because the real money from superhero comic characters comes not from the comics themselves, but from toys, cartoons, video games, and movies, both live-action and animated. Hence why Warner Bros. and Disney don't mind letting SJW fruitcakes run comics into the ground: the real money isn't being made there anyways, so why not use them to gain points from the media and the SJWs?

Sure, the SJWs and this whole Coronavirus thing killing publishing companies and small comic shops are the killing blow to the comic book industry. But the industry was dying a slow death ever since the 90s, with the superhero comics falling behind while indie comics, non-superhero comics, and yes, manga and anime, have been killing it for years. The comic book industry is dying, but alternatives are rising up to take its place. The comic industry in 10 years from now could be radically different than the current one, and it could be a better one, if it follows the more successful lead of indie comics and manga/anime instead of the dying superhero comic genre. (Continued in second comment)

Vader999 said...

Going back into the economy, letting it crash might actually be a good thing. It could remove from power the many corporate and governmental leeches that have long fed off the slow decline of the economic system. It could usher in a new economy not controlled by politically established and censor-happy types that stifle new growth. It could even cause great anger and hatred towards these censorship-supporting twats because hey, feminism's already a dirty word now, and if it turns out that these "Karens" were responsible for crashing the economy by stifling creativity, the world could easily turn on them, especially as the next generation of girls grow into women and the men have them as an alternate choice, while the "Karens" grow old, bitchy, and alone, and get abandoned like many feminist women were abandoned by the leftists after the 70s and 80s once they grew old. The next generations will come to hate them. The alt-sphere and 4chan will remain, while these SJWs will wither away with time. And as the West collapses, so too will the influence of these "Karens." I've seen it myself when I taught in public school, the kids don't give a shit about the leftist brainwashing, they prefer video games and getting laid. And of course, most of these "Karens" prefer cats to kids, so it's not like they can pass on their ways to the next generation. Especially since the next generation really doesn't like them all that much.

Plus, one has to factor in that many people from the developing world, from Africans, to Asians, to Latinos and Arabs, all hate feminism and all support a more masculine culture. These SJW whiners grew in power through the western political structure, and as that structure continues to become irrelevant the same way the Western Roman Empire collapsed in the late 400s, so too will these SJWs. China, the closest thing the US has to a rival, is hilariously macho to the point where many men would openly say things that are "chauvinistic" and their society is openly racist against blacks. Russia is the same, with skinheads beating up foreigners while the government is more conservative, letting Church and family authorities rule the household. Latino culture revolves around the strongman, with strong capitalist or socialist dictators taking control while macho gangsters rule the streets. Africans and Arabs have laws against much of the "moral indecency" that the SJWs love to support, and they're also heavily patriarchal. So basically, if we're looking at the global economy for the next 50 years, it's going to be very unfriendly to SJWs.

If anything, I say, let things collapse. The Roman Empire, as great as it had been, was always a ticking time bomb, with the question of succession always being up for debate, leading to endless succession wars like the Crisis of the Third Century and the many military coups in the Byzantine (Eastern Roman) Empire. But the collapse of Roman authority in the West allowed for new governments to surface, and even a new Roman Empire (the Holy Roman Empire) where they had a clear line of succession due to prince-electors being able to elect emperors. These new governments had written laws and constitutions that outlined the limits of royal power and the responsibilities of the sovereign, so overthrowing a king would be a lot harder unless most nobles and commonfolk supported you. Eventually, one of these constitutions, the Magna Carta, formed the basis of the US Constitution today. We wouldn't have that if Rome didn't fall, we'd just have Emperors that pass the crown to their sons unless they get overthrown by a rival. So there are times when yes, a collapse isn't just needed, but necessary, for the sake of evolution and the betterment of mankind. We've seen it in politics, we've seen it in industries, so the economy crashing and paving the way for something else might be a bad thing at first, but it can lead to something better in the future.

Bill said...

Barren Karen can bigger off. Also,

The Phantom said...

I'd be more upset by your post if I hadn't read a similar article by an American industrialist in the 1890s, and another one translated from the ancient Sumerian that was found on a clay tablet in the Fertile Crescent.

People, generally, are idiots. Always have been. The older you get, the more obvious it is. I'm 64, I spend a lot of time rolling my eyes. Can't wait to be 80 and realize what a dumbass I was at 64.

Our job and our challenge, as civilized men, is to drag the lame and the stupid along behind us. Its not fair, but that's the way it is.

In this regard, it may be that the COVID-19 lockdown is not all bad. It is certainly revealing all the places where incompetent imbeciles have created choke points and failures in the supply chain. There should be plenty of jobs for clever people fixing that mess.

Anonymous said...

Entertainment has a unique property: it's permanent and infinitely reusable. Your great grandchildren can "eat the same cake" as you. In a hundred years there will be more quality public-domain entertainment than any person could possibly watch in their lifetime. Supply rises forever.

liberranter said...

The nickel and diming away of our time and life is manageable when it is solely the Wyoming-3 but it feels like the whole world is quickly careening into mediocrity.

It is. As I commented on another blog a few weeks ago, it seems that SJW and virtue signaling are the primary focus of most businesses today, not producing a quality good or service for paying customers demanding value in exchange for their money. Witness the fact that in any given industry, nearly every provider's product today is the same as that of the competition, with quality ranging from very mediocre at best to downright unacceptable at worst. It's a "monopoly of mediocrity" on a global scale. It's due to a toxic combination of the zoological stupidity and incompetence of the average worker and the unbridled greed and destructive shortsightedness of the executive management and owner classes.

Some degree of this has been the norm throughout all of human history, but I'm not sure that it's ever been as systemically entrenched as it is today.

Janxrathra said...

The ironic typo in the title is pure genius.

Post Alley Crackpot said...

"I was waiting patiently ... at [a] Wyoming Subway ..."

Well, there's the start of the problem.

Subway's like a drop-in part that acts like a local restaurant but isn't: a chunk of the income goes back to the Subway Mothership in the form of having to buy stuff through their supply chains and having to pay franchise fees.

It's a lazy restaurant solution for ... who are they, exactly?

The people running it want a "standard solution", and so the type of people who find jobs at it ... who are they, exactly?

Neither the owners nor the workers are all that invested in the restaurant itself: it's a franchise, it's just another job, it's something that if it goes bust, everybody will probably get new jobs or new businesses going at some point.

So why are you expecting that anyone working there would have any kind of time investment or attitude of giving a crap about their customers ... who are they, exactly?

Don't buffalo us about what your choices were in that Wyoming town.

You couldn't be bothered to seek out a better restaurant, and because of your choices and the choices of others making that same choice by default, Subway is what you have.

The workers can't be bothered to take risks to find a better job or to create their own, and because of their choices, Subway's all they have.

The owners know what they're dealing with, won't fight it, and can use this standard drop-in restaurant part as a bigger money-making strategy, and because of their choices, Subway's what they have.

Understand that the problem is systemic and that you are also a part of it, even as a short-term visitor.

A useful memory aid fact: most people have a two to three item buffer for their extremely short-term memory before they start dropping items in the list.

So what do you probably do?

"Yeah, I wanna roastbeefwithcheddaronwhitebreadfootlong with lettucepicklesolivesmustardmayooilvinegaroreganotomatorelishsrirachasauceextracheese ... and don't forget the oregano!"

Understand that in these situations, you're the one being the asshole, because you're expecting something you're not paying for.

Let's get to the major flaw in Asshole Consulting then: you are such a fucking asshole that you appear to be unwilling to give your clients a decent reach-around every now and then by telling them how fucking awesome they really are despite their bullshit.

If you'd spend at least a little time building up some of your clients who aren't complete fuck-ups, you might make more money from your highly valued ego reach-around services and "Am I The Asshole" services than you do by laying out the worst-case scenario for everything they believe or do.

As for your Subway sandwich ...

"So, kid, you're kinda fucking up my sandwich, obviously your mind's elsewhere ... what do you plan on doing with your life after you break out of this joint?"

Instead, there you are making enemies with people who have one thing up on you: despite their intelligence or lack of it, they are good at surviving in a rough environment.

There may yet be things you can learn from these people.

Don't like this advice?

Suck it up, buttercup, that's why I'm in Management and you're just an Asshole Consultant.

I don't have to be your friend to tell you how and why you're fucking up, but I also don't have to turn you into an enemy doing it.

Understand that when you are not the boss, you get the level of service built into the business policies, their prices, all of the employee relationships, the boss's level of engagement, and what everyone can get away with.

Want something better? Pay for something better.

Otherwise, slow your roll, these people really have heard it all before.

But if you want more stupid jobs for stupid people in America, just keep going to all of those places like that Subway.

That problem actually starts with you.

Anonymous said...

It may not be that they forgot the details of your order, but that they hope you change your mind and add a bag of chips or whatever. It's probably a soft upsell.

Anonymous said...

Your mug isn't offensive even in the slightest. It's amazing how easily it is to set someone off to be triggered or to virtue signal.

Anonymous said...

Stupid people are the bread and butter of the not stupid. I am not condoning that any one steal form another. Once you figure out how to mine the miners life gets much easier.

DocVinny said...

Yeah.. I'm guessing he did