Giant waste of talent

There’s an interesting desistance movement in videogaming. Influencers are ganging up on game companies that specialize in addictive gambling with REAL MONEY.

At the moment the worst offender is Diablo Immortal. The influencers, who have been playing the game intensively, have figured out all the super-complex steps needed to … win? Well, it’s not really winning, it’s just “equipping your character completely”. I have no idea what this means, but it’s apparently the goal. Or rather it’s part of the goal, because you also need to equip all the other characters completely.

The path to complete equipment includes an unbelievably complex pile of layers, each with different names and mathematical functions. There are Gems and Legendary Gems and stars on the gems and resonances on the stars and more stars that open up when you resonate each star…

This is explicitly gambling, not work, because every one of these fake achievements is governed by random numbers. So you can’t know in advance how much real  money you need to insert in the 5489th slot of the machine to reach the point where you may be eligible to put real money in the 5490th slot of the machine.

YongYea sums up the calcs, and concludes that if you’re unlucky at each step you’ll need HALF A MILLION DOLLARS OF REAL MONEY to equip one character.

The information campaign is working, because the number of players is dropping off quickly, and some servers are no longer carrying the game.

Unlike the Reddit short squeeze campaigns, which were actually orchestrated by one Wall Street fuckhead to maximize his own wealth, this is a simple boycott, and it’s having an effect.

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Bigger point: THIS IS A TRAGIC WASTE OF HUMAN SKILL.

Similar levels of mathy complexity are involved in many REAL jobs, now offshored or eliminated by tech or shut down by the “virus”.  Cooking, sewing, farming, printing, tool-and-die making, car repair, TV repair, all involve layers of semi-mathy knowledge, and all produce REAL RESULTS in return for REAL WAGES.

Gambling produces nothing but debt and sorrow.

These gamblers have tremendous untapped talents, which formerly helped to keep a real civilization going. They served real human needs and RECEIVED real money in return for using their talents. Now they’re using their talents to LOSE MONEY and enrich the owner of the game company.

Pretty neat trick.

Top gangsters often continue managing their gangs while serving jail sentences. This is fairly rare in modern US prisons, more common in Mexico.

Now the top swindler Anna Delvey is announcing a new swindle IN PRISON, with a highly public news conference IN PRISON. The smartest swindlers always find ways to operate “within the law”, and Anna is doing it with NFTs.

The socialite told NBC News that she has minted 10 NFTs (non-fungible tokens). Holders will somehow have “exclusive access” to Sorokin, who is in a correctional facility under the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The NFT holders will seemingly have the chance to meet Sorokin, who has appealed her pending deportation. Holders will also receive a bundle of “personal items” from Sorokin, who, again, is in detention.

Pretty neat money-laundering trick. Get your accomplices to visit so you can pass orders and contraband. Call the accomplices “investors”. Call the contraband “art” and sell it for millions of dollars to the “investors”.

Later and better thought. In stories and movies (not much in real life) a gangster leaves his loot in a hiding place while he’s inside. The gangster secretly tells a trusted accomplice where to find the loot, and he recovers it and keeps it until the gangster gets out. An NFT would fulfill this purpose precisely and literally. It’s a coded reference to the location of a valuable object. Anna’s NFTs may be telling the accomplices where to find the digital loot, so they can grab it before the cops figure it out.

Counterfeit is a feature

Over and over again, suckers are losing their money in the Ethereum branch of the bitcoin crime. Ethereum makes it possible to write ‘smart contracts’ which order the blockchain to do certain things. Scammers write ‘contracts’ that empty the bank, or pay them twice what they put in, or tell the bank to ignore the bad signature.

This is always reported as a bug, but it’s a feature.

Smart contracts are just a fancy version of bank drafts or checks. A check is a contract that literally ORDERS the bank to PAY a specific amount to the bearer of the check.

The scammer, presumably in league with the bitcoin ‘bank’, knows how to code up a contract that gives him total control.

Real banks don’t allow customized checks which ORDER the bank to ignore the signature. Banks don’t regard smartness as cool. A check like this is a holdup note, not a smart contract.

EXPonential EXPectation reprint

Inspired by NFT stupidity, here’s a reprint from 2018.

= = = = =

ABSTRACTION is the cause of EVERY SINGLE CRASH in business, government, and ordinary lives.

Abstraction has three Ds:

(1) Debt.

(2) Delusions.

(3) Drugs.

All three are unsustainable departures from real value and real work and real measurements. Sooner or later reality crashes you.

What do the three D’s have in common? EXPONENTIAL curves, or at least attempted exponentials. Debt is obvious. Compound interest IS exp by definition. Delusions and drugs both arise from a false anticipation of constant increase in pleasure or holiness or popularity or status or value.

We EXPect things to be EXPonential. Reality is TANH. The DELTAS between anticipation and reality grow larger as reality departs from our desires.

Happystar illustrates the process. First our EXPonential EXPectation:

Reality goes tanh. Up at first, then reaches saturation or maturity and holds steady. Our heads are in the clouds of EXPectation and our feet are on the ground of tanh.

Now the crucial point. Our anticipations feel like the constant standard, the point we measure from. Our EXPectations are the baseline, the goal for our error-correcting feedback. We are constantly TRYING to achieve the EXPected condition. Thus our perceived reality is DOWNWARD,

Because reality is increasingly disappointing, we have an increasing desire for SOMETHING that will restore us to standard. This is where the sellers of religion or drugs or politics or hair color or bitcoin come in. You’re not misperceiving reality, you’re just NOT TRYING HARD ENOUGH and NOT BUYING HARD ENOUGH. You need more booze, more Eucharist, more voting, more makeup.

= = = = =

How about the inverse question:

Does Nature ever USE exponentials?

Well, life can’t do an unending exp, because an unending exp is physically impossible. You can only get an unending exp in math. So the question narrows: Does life create AND POP bubbles intentionally?

Of course. All the time, in an infinite number of ways. Specifically, many types of neurons are pulse oscillators, repeating an exp rise followed by a natural pop. The most common neurons of all, the granule cells in the cerebellum, are pulse code handlers. Most of the action in hearing is done by pulse codes. Toward the output of each system, the pulses are smoothed into analog motions for muscles, or integrated into longer and more complex resonances for memory patterns.

In short, Nature uses all of the PHYSICALLY POSSIBLE combinations of exp and tanh. Nature rejects the only combination we believe in.

All the fine old swindles 2

Cathie Woods alias ARK Invest is a classic swindler who somehow got into a position of respected power and influence. Her claims are identical to the techy con men of 70 years ago, pushing Perpetual Energy Machines or Magic Gasoline Tablets.

She says that AI will give us annual doubling of the economy. This is crazy.

AI (big data, inference engines) has been around since 1890. It’s been a major part of corporate activity since 1960, gradually getting smarter. AI has reached the limits of its capacity, and real manufacturers know it. There’s no magic, no perpetual motion. It’s a wonderful tool when used properly, but it’s just a supercharged adding machine. It can’t make decisions without human editing, it can’t perform the most basic tasks like cleaning a floor or cutting hair. It can’t do any of the things that Cathie claims.

All the fine old swindles

I enjoy watching the bitcoin idiots “rediscover” and fall for all the old scams. A bitcoin thingy called Solana made a big deal of keeping perfectly accurate time “on the chain”, which is obviously necessary because obviously there are no other clocks in the world. Just like grasshoppers are the only living things that can fly. The computer says it, I believe it, that settles it. Math is the only law.

From Molly White’s wonderful aggregator:

The Solana blockchain clock drifted about 30 minutes behind real-world time on May 26, as a result of slower-than-usual slot times. Solana’s status page read that “this has no impact on performance or network operations”, though The Block noted that this time drift could result in smaller staking payouts.

Blockchain timekeeping is a selling point of Solana, which talks up its “proof of history” algorithm in a blog post where Solana Labs co-founder Anatoly Yakovenko says, “our clocks never drift”.

Note especially smaller staking payouts. I have no idea what staking payouts are, but presumably they’re the only way for suckers to get a return from whatever Solana pretends to do.

Off-standard clocks were a common feature of the more ingenious scams in earlier eras. Example 1. Example 2. The sucker thinks he’s hearing real-time race or game results, but the scammer already knows the results and delays all the clocks and watches visible to the sucker. This trick faded out in the computer era when everyone had direct access to real standard time. Now it’s back, thanks to the crazy ‘private world’ of bitcoin.

Our clocks never drift, so if you’re seeing a different time on some other clock, your other clock must be wrong! Math wins every time!

Polistra and Happystar, remembering that Nature is full of accurate clocks, are especially disgusted by this reliance on fake clocks supplied by obvious fraudsters. Centuries of painstaking work by astrologers and astronomers pinned down the rhythm of the universe. Now we’re letting the algorithm set the “only” clock, just as we let the algorithm jumble up time altogether.

Old game

I’ve noticed for a while that influencers who are realistic about most aspects of the fucked-up world are also selling bitcoin.

This shibboleth works both ways in a perfect balance. Influencers who are strongly opposed to bitcoin are perfectly orthodox about all other aspects. They agree with DNC/CNN/MSNBC on all topics except bitcoin.

There’s a third group of well-paid professional semi-skeptics. Vice salutes a group of ‘detectives’ who are warning suckers about the subscams within bitcoin, and simultaneously pushing the big scam.

“I’m by no means anti-crypto, but I am anti-scams and there’s a lot of scams in crypto. It’s the wild wild west out there. And the regulators are just a little slow to catch up right now. So the crypto community has to figure out how to self monitor.”

These selective detectives are making a lot of money. Some of them are paid by major bitcoin companies. This is an OLD game. Expert scammers always warn people to avoid the “bad side” of the scam, thus funneling the suckers into the swindler who gives the warning.

Reprint on scam-spotting

Previous item led to this from last year.

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Another where’s the guild question. In this case I’m not really puzzled by the absence of a guild response because I know exactly how and when the guild was subverted and flipped. It happened 20 years ago.

The current “virus” holocaust is based HEAVILY on cheating with software.

The use of software to create and expand a fake crisis began with the Carbon Cult, with Mann’s fake hockey stick models showing exponential increase of CO2 “pollution”.

A more visible example for outsiders was VW’s diesel cheating. Diesel is intrinsically and incurably MORE DIRTY THAN GASOLINE, but the Carbon Cult flipped the comparison and redefined diesel as clean because VW bribed them to flip. VW then used software to fake the numbers. The control computer in each car sensed when the car was connected to an official test rig, and outputted artifically low numbers.

Same thing with the “virus”. Exponential models can’t possibly represent reality because reality is never exponential. Governments use the models because governments want to kill everyone. Software processes the “cases”, and HIPAA prevents us from checking the “cases”. Even if the “cases” were honestly counted, “cases” are THE WRONG FUCKING MEASUREMENT. Just as with diesel vs gasoline, the holocausters have flipped medicine upside down, redefining “cases” as dirty.

The proper MEANING of “cases” isn’t in the models, so we don’t get to hear it.

= = = = =

From a modern perspective it seems obvious that ABSTRACT software makes cheating easier, but this total misuse wasn’t always normal. There was a guild spirit in software that tried to protect the craft from misuse and cheating.

When did it change? 2000. Dotcom. Cheaters took over the biz.

Computing began with the government census, at a time when the government wanted accuracy. From 1890 to 1990 software mainly served corporate accounting. Computers were seen as fancy adding machines, and they were REQUIRED to be strictly honest.

Bookkeepers and their adding machines were the honest end of the system. After the bookkeeper had carefully verified the accuracy of the double-entry ledger, the accountant walked in and arbitrarily moved numbers around to cheat on taxes. This may be unfamiliar to outsiders, but it was standard procedure. You can see the setup powerfully in this Racket Squad episode.

The machine was the honest end, and the human accountant was the criminal.

The dotcommers reversed the paradigm. They used the software itself to create false impressions of their wealth and corporate solidity, then used software to manipulate the market, and had no compunction at all about ruining lives to EXPONENTIALLY increase their wealth.

More specifically, how did software switch in the public mind from an adding machine to an authority, from a fact to a command?

In the Racket Squad episode, the boss tells the bookkeeper to release an arbitrary and dishonest set of numbers. The bookkeeper refuses. Boss says “Are you calling me a liar?” Bookkeeper says “No, but my adding machine doesn’t lie either.” In that situation we can see clearly who’s lying.

The trick seems to be AI. Most people don’t understand that AI is still an adding machine. The AI hype by both commercial and governmental propagandists has persuaded us that AI can make its own decisions independent of human input, while remaining impartial and mechanical.

Can’t have it both ways. The trick conflates the demons who are writing the intentionally bad predictive models with the computer that doesn’t lie. Because the DECISION POWER has been falsely transferred to the computer, we don’t blame the demons who actually DECIDED to write counterfactual and unrealistic math models.

If most people learned math in the context of job-related problems and projects, they would understand the stages of this process better. They’d know that the PROGRAMMER can lie, even if the CPU doesn’t lie.

Huge exception to an old rule

This is a completely trivial criticism of an old obscure TV show, but it seems to be what I need to write today. Maybe there’s a reason, maybe not.

The show was ‘Man of the World’, one of many British James Bond imitators. Other shows in this genre gave us remarkably accurate dramatizations of facts that can’t be shown now, like this absolutely perfect picture of a psychopath.

‘Man of the World’ went the opposite way, with a remarkably stupid depiction of basic scientific method. Every radio and TV detective and cop show, from the ’30s onward, managed an accurate and USEFUL dramatization of scam-spotting methods. Not this one.

This episode was about an attention-seeking father who exploited his daughter’s talents, trying to make her famous as a mindreader. The protagonist was a reporter who was supposedly trying to spot the scam. He consulted a psychiatrist who was supposedly an expert.

Starting here, we see a “controlled” experiment with the daughter inside an isolation booth to avoid sound cues. The father was doing most of the writing and card-picking. Obvious error #1. When you suspect a partner act, you want to exclude one of the partners. Then the psych threw some dice while the father was watching the dice AND FACING THE DAUGHTER. Obvious error #2. Any card-player would recognize this form of cheating. Then the psych wrote some numbers on paper, while hiding the paper itself behind a barrier. But the numbers were huge, involving elbow and shoulder motions that were easy to see. He invited the reporter to write some numbers, and again he wrote huge numbers instead of miniature fingers-only numbers. Obvious error #3.

I’m inclined to assume that old entertainment got the facts of life right, but this is one huge exception to the rule.

Metasantayana

The old Santayana quote is stupidly delusional, and apparently Santayana meant it as wildly ironic. He wasn’t delusional.

The demons who repeat history are NOT unaware, and they are NOT clueless, and they are NOT repeating errors. They know EXACTLY what they’re doing and where they’re going. From their viewpoint they are magnificently successful. The sole purpose of a psychopath is to kill and ruin everything and everyone.

If we delusionally believe that the demons intend to solve problems and help us, we will be totally vulnerable. If we understand their goals, we might have a somewhat better chance of avoiding their traps.

A meta version of the quote can be useful for ordinary people:

Those who don’t know that history repeats are doomed to be ruined by the repeaters.

We can’t fully escape the official torturers and mass murderers like Mecher and Fauci, but we can ALWAYS ESCAPE the demons who operate in the economic realm.

All of the scams and swindles and utopian schemes in the bitcoin world are OLD OLD OLD OLD OLD swindles.

The classic Spanish Prisoner hoax is 1000 years old, with infinite variations. If you know the basics, you can recognize the variations.

A huge potential windfall waits for you! But it’s tangled up in a series of obstacles and legalities. Pay me to bust through the obstacles, and you’ll receive the huge windfall!

Then you pay the swindler and he disappears. The disappearing part is vastly easier online, especially in bitcoin circles where everyone is anonymous and untraceable by definition. The whole structure of bitcoin is designed to make the Spanish Prisoner work smoothly.

Truly new invention

The peculiar extreme suckerdom of NFTs is hard to comprehend. The suckers proudly exhibit horrible art as their avatars in social media, and proudly exhibit the hexagon-shaped Twitter profile.

These fools are proudly walking around wearing a badge that says

I AM A PERFECT SUCKER.
CHEAT ME NOW!

Older generations of scammers bought and sold their sucker lists behind the scenes. MLM/cult suckers could often be recognized by their favorite discussion topics after you got to know them, but they didn’t flash a SUCKER HERE! billboard.

The SUCKER BADGE is a new and brilliant invention.

No, it’s not falling behind

The latest stupid lawsuit claims that the plaintiff bought a ‘rare NFT’ but it wasn’t rare enough or something. So he’s suing to get back the 500k he spent for the ‘rare NFT’.

An attorney on the other side says:

“We are in a world where copyright is many years behind the art world and the movie world and the media world in general. But now that world is accelerating into this technological space where it’s moving at an exponentially faster rate. As a result, copyright law and trademark law and publicity law and contract law falls further and further behind.”

No. Copyrights and licensing can handle this situation easily.

Copyrights are just what the word says. You can see or hold an artwork for your own purposes without paying for a copyright. If you want to make copies of the artwork FOR MONEY, you need to pay for permission. Licensing can get complex, with specific permissions to do specific things in specific circumstances, but the basic principle is the same. You’re paying for permission to make money off the idea or artwork.

An NFT is not an entity or an artwork or a copyright. It’s not a thing or a function or a contract. When you pay for an NFT you aren’t gaining permission to make copies. You aren’t gaining permission to look at the artwork, because it’s already there on the web, lookable and printable for your own enjoyment. YOU ARE PAYING FOR NOTHING AT ALL. There’s no fraud because NFTs are advertised correctly. You know upfront that you are PAYING FOR NOTHING. No Fucking Thing = NFT.

The NFT is only a number that refers to the artwork. I could make up my own number if I enjoyed such activities. “I own 3278, which is my way of referring to the Mona Lisa.” Okay, fine. So I attach a number to the Mona Lisa when I think about her. Numbering might be useful to keep track of a large museum-style collection, but it has absolutely no legal or commercial function, and no sane person would pay me for permission to connect a DIFFERENT NUMBER to the Mona Lisa. Anyone can perform this weird mental trick without paying.

Real artists should be protesting loudly. The NFT sellers are diverting billions of dollars that could otherwise be supporting real work by real artists.

Look through Etsy. You can buy a nice original painting for $100. So this idiot’s $500k would buy a whole museum of real original physical paintings, and it would help real artists to survive and continue producing. The buyer would then have a reason to attach catalog numbers to his museum of 5000 real physical artworks!

It’s not quite that simple

Dan Olson has been doing God’s work in exposing the absolute total swindle of ALL bitcoin and ALL blockchain and ALL NFTs.

In this interview he hits one huge point precisely and misses one mid-sized point.

The precise hit:

Regulating NFTs as securities is useful, but it’s not going to fix the problem. The problem is metastasizing out of deeper structural problems, deeper social policy issues. We’ve got minimum wage that is so stagnant. We need to actually address the root problems. The material existence of people sucks at the moment because we’ve allowed a lot of rot to get very deep into our society. It’s squeezing people, it’s making people feel like the future doesn’t exist. That leads to desperate reactions.

Precise diagnosis. His proposed solutions don’t quite get there: It’s not just minimum wage and debt forgiveness, it’s a total lack of REAL BUSINESS and REAL PRODUCTION and REAL ECONOMY. Useful work was gradually offshored, and then totally prohibited in 2020. Work was replaced by torture.

Here’s the missed point:

Q: Why is the art of NFTs just so dang ugly?

A:Because they don’t care.

The folks who are steering all of this, the guys who are in charge, or the guys who go out and make something like Bored Ape Yacht club, like they’re just hollow inside. They don’t understand art. They don’t understand culture. They don’t watch television. They don’t watch movies. They don’t read books. They don’t read comics. They just, they know that these things exist and they know that other people care about them and they’re just performing culture because they see culture just as a commodity.

No. People who don’t know much about art would simply copy what the books say is good art. NFTs would be copying Leonardo or Rembrandt or cathedrals. In other words, kitsch.

NFTs aren’t kitsch. NFTs are intentionally horrible. Some of them are 6-pixel approximations of bad drawings. It’s a classic and VERY OLD Sucker Filter.

The hollowness isn’t in the artist, it’s in the buyer. People who want to spend billions for “art” are not looking for art at all. They’re only looking for prestige and status and brands.

This particular Filter was invented 100 years ago by the Dadaists and Abstracters. Picasso and Pollock knew how to paint, and produced some beautiful work before they figured out the Filter. They started producing horrible anti-art to guarantee that only the richest fools would buy their shit.

NFT follows the same idea as Pollock. If you want to insure that your buyers are idiots who will spend megabucks for PRESTIGE, you don’t want to dilute the idiot class by offering beauty. You want to restrict the market to money-mad prestige seekers with no morals or esthetic sense.

Converse is useful

Over the last two years of “virus” holocaust I’ve been tirelessly and tiresomely repeating:

THEY KNOW IT’S A HOAX BECAUSE THEY CREATED THE HOAX.

The rulers don’t use ballgags and distancing and needles because they know the whole routine is MURDER. Criminals don’t shoot themselves.

= = = = =

Universal rules can be turned into a logical converse. Sometimes the converse doesn’t apply to a real situation, and sometimes it’s useful.

In this case the converse would be:

IF THEY DON’T KNOW IT’S A HOAX, THEY WEREN’T INVOLVED IN CREATING IT.

This doesn’t help with the “virus” hoax because we already know who the demons are. The converse is useful in other hoaxes where the line between demon and human is not obvious. We assume from experience that big companies are inside all games and crimes and swindles, but this isn’t always true.

David Gerard collects idiotic news items about bitcoin and NFTs. One type of idiocy falls into this converse. Companies and governments rush into bitcoin or NFTs, believing the hoax will make a profit or solve a problem. They soon realize it’s pointless, and back out abruptly without making any money. (You can be sure the SELLERS of the hoax made non-refundable REAL money on the failed deal involving FAKE money. The bitcoin world strictly prohibits every form of recourse or refund.)

From his latest report:

Associated Press tried to use NFTs for guaranteed copyright protection, then backed off.

A subscription underwear company (WTF???? Who wants to subscribe to underwear??????) tried to put the standard pipe-smoking monkey on one of its underwear items, believing it would instantly acquire megabuck value. Nobody bought it.

These instant failures prove that the companies didn’t understand the hoax.

A larger example was the rush to embrace Black Lives Matter, in the middle of the “virus” holocaust. Every government and corporation jumped in, declaring that riots are the cure for “viruses”. They backed off quickly after they realized BLM supports Palestine. If they had been inside the game they would have known that ethnic NGOs are hoaxes. This is an OLD scam, beginning in the ’60s when integration deprived blacks of their own businesses and income, turning them into political puppets for DNC. Those NGOs are profit centers and power sources for their leaders. They do no good for ordinary black people.

Swindlers don’t put tremendous money and effort into a game that won’t pay off. Swindlers create the game, pulling in money from the downstream suckers.