Do ‘critical points’ exist in psychology … and do they affect economics

The concept of a ‘critical point’ is something we see in many sciences … I wonder if it applies to human psychology as well?

First let’s review some examples of ‘critical points’

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From your freshman astronomy class, you may remember the event horizon that surrounds a black hole. It is the distance from the black hole’s core such that for any particle that goes beyond this point, it will never be able to come back out … it has become trapped in the black hole … it has fallen within the critical point distance.

Once a particle falls into a black hole, the only opportunity for it to escape is if some Magical Hand reaches into the black hole and pulls the particle back out.

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A more common example of a ‘critical point’ is the ‘freezing point’ of water (but it is based on temperature). When water falls below 32F, the molecules become trapped in solid form, incapable of moving … kind of like the particles that fall into the black hole.

Once a particle drops in temperature below its freezing point, it becomes trapped, unable to move, and the only opportunity for the iced molecules is if some external agent injects warmth into the system thus freeing it again.

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There also exists a critical point in human psychology … for all of us.

And once you or I or anyone falls below it we are no longer capable of functioning and behaving as would a normal, healthy individual. The only opportunity is if some external force helps us.

Simulated view of a black hole in front of the...

random picture of a black hole

I think that most of the lower economic class in our country are actually just individuals, even entire communities, that have fallen below this psychology critical point.

In the meantime, all the healthy people sit around and express their doubts about the members of the lower class: they’re lazy, they’re drug addicts, they’re criminals … but we have only observed them in their sub-critical-point psychology state, and we have done so from our own healthy state point of view. They struggle to function.

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Bubble-up economics has the potential to fix this, to directly inject positive influences into the difficulties that the lower class faces. It is a system that attempts to re-invigorate the lower class via productivity-oriented social programs, an array of types of programs, each with the similar expectation to benefit the struggling individual but also the taxpayer paying for the program through an applicable ROI.



What is “Bubble-Up” economics

A good way to visualize “trickle-down” economics is to watch the water bubbles in an aquarium that happens to be using a “power filter”. Power filters pour water over the top of the aquarium into the water, creating water bubbles that circulate down to the bottom of the aquarium.

power-filters-2

Frankly, most people already understand “trickle down” economics well enough that they do not need a visualization tool.

However, an aquarium visualization tool can teach us about more economic issues and systems than just trickle down. So I will use the basic “power filter” aquarium to establish a basis for an “aquarium metaphor”, and then introduce variations in an effort to learn about “trickle out” economics and “bubble up” economics.


For my diagrams:

  • an aquarium represents a country
  • water represents the population
  • water depth represents wealth stratum … … upper water = upper class, lower water = lower class
  • oxygen bubbles represent money.


This first diagram shows that trickle-down can and should work in a closed environment. Basically the wealthy class keeps their capital at tax time, but spends their money on employees and goods such that their money successfully permeates the full class spectrum.

The goal with trickle-down was that the best money managers would be enabled to make strong innovative decisions with their annual holdings and that money would make it to the lower-class via normal market mechanisms.


The problem with diagram A is that it only works in a closed environment … but America is not a closed environment.


If an aquarium (eg. America) is connected to another aquarium (eg. china), then the trickle-down process is disrupted as water bubbles (eg. money) flow out. This can happen when a member of the wealthy class buys stock in a foreign company, or when he buys an expensive foreign car, or outsources various aspects of his company. This is dangerous because the lower class will never receive the oxygenation necessary to maintain a healthy environment in the lower economic strata. (It should be mentioned that if an equal amount of water bubbles flow back into the aquarium, then balance will be maintained.)


Bubble-up economics, on the other hand, ensures that oxygen gets to the lowest classes.

aquarium_aerator

The oxygen is mechanically delivered to the bottom, where it is released. This bypasses the wealthy’s exploitable opportunity to trickle-out for their own profitability. Economically speaking, the money is mechanically delivered to the lower class via social programs, such as job training, small business investment funds, municipal projects, and other Productivity-Oriented Social Programs. Productivity-Oriented Social Programs are not the same thing as welfare.




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what are Productivity-Oriented Social Programs

Would productivity-oriented social-programs make everybody happy?

Liberals want a social net.
Conservatives want productivity and progress.
Poor people want access to the American dream.

Currently America primarily uses various forms of welfare for social net: food stamps, medicare, unemployment benefits, gov’t housing, etc. So the gov’t is already paying out the money, but not getting anything in return (though the money does get pumped back into the economy).

Three examples of productivity-oriented social-programs:
1 – gov’t funded job training … so if I am unemployed I can enroll in a job training program (for 2 years probably) that will be for some envelop-pushing position once I’m fully trained … this would be good for the country, because in 2 years there would be about 5 million bad asses ready to take America’s mfg into the 21st c.
2 – gov’t funded work … maybe workers can paint bridges, or maybe something better, but regardless at least the workers get to go to work, the society gets its necessary upkeep, and the gov’t doesn’t just spend money for nothing.
3 – gov’t funded mom-and-pop angel investment … currently the only people in society who really have a shot at true capitalism (creating new businesses, new ideas) are those that already have something such as collateral for business loan, a mgmt. team, a business track record, a social network that connects to investors. So for a couple who wants to break out of their apartment-life there is really no option (the SBA does not pander to poor people). These programs could be heavily overseen by gov’t consultants and accountants until the mom-and-pod get their own momentum going.

In all three examples, people who are in the lower rungs of the economic ladder get support, but they also produce something as well. Let me know your thoughts.



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illustration: connected buckets


When America began to connect to third world nations for the purpose of trade, our $18/hour society was no match for China’s $.25/hour society, and our money began to drain outwards toward China.




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History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict


For the most part, to understand the Conflict you must begin with the Old Testament book, Deuteronomy. It gives us insight into why Israelites consider that land (ie. present-day Israel) to be their historic land. In summary: the Jews were enslaved in Egypt, then they marched out of Egypt and into ‘Israel’. This was a war-filled period of time, but in the end the Jews won their wars against the various peoples that lived there 3000 years ago, and took control of the land.

The next part of understanding the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict comes from the New Testament, where we see that the Romans have taken control of that same land.

And then for a couple of thousand years, the land changed hands several times due to the warring nature of humans.

Finally, in the late 1800’s, the ‘modern’ phase of today’s conflict begins. The Jews, who were living throughout Europe in different locations, began to develop a mission to re-settle their ‘historic homeland’. It sounds reasonable, except that that land was also the historic homeland of many many other cultures.

And then hitler shows up (no capital ‘H’ for him … he’s a dick-head), and he does what he did to the Jews of Europe.

After WWII the world feels sorry for the Jews. I presume that at this point everybody is probably in agreement regarding the Jews.

But then: 1947. The UN decides to console the Jews of Europe by assuredly giving them the thing that they have been wanting for fifty years, namely, their ‘historic homeland’. Sounds like a nice gesture by the civilized world in the wake of the hell that the Jews suffered during the war. But in order to provide this kind gift to the Jewish people, the residents of that land had to be removed. They are the Palestineans.

Think about this for about an hour, and then continue reading.

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That’s right: the Palestinaens had to pay the price for hitler’s evil … how do you think the Palestineans felt … they were just farming their land, and then the UN says: ‘you got to move’.

And to make matters worse, the UN/US supported this newly-created nation of Israel by funding them monetarily and militarily, and all the sudden the Jews have the military power to close off the Palestineans from the outside world.

Not surprisingly, the Palestinians were mad. And so were their Muslim brothers. Hence all the f’d-up insanity that we live with today.




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Who spiked the simple man’s koolaid

Today, while listening to Charlie Daniel’s Simple Man, I noticed something. That song identifies a classic pattern: good honest workers usually revolt against

  • A) crooked politicians,
  • B) over-reaching capitalists, and
  • C) society-destroying criminals

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But today it seems that they are only revolting against Obama and Democrat-politicians … so why is the pattern different?

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Here’s my theory: With the implementation of trickle-down policies in the 80’s, and then NAFTA in the early 90’s, the American economic environment began to heavily favor the tycoon-capitalists over the common working men (tycoon-capitalists are not the same as mom-and-pop-capitalists) .

Historically, in these types of environments two phases follow:

  • 1 – society splits into an aristocratic class and a peasant class,
  • 2 – then the peasant class (usually a combination of the Working Class, who power the revolt, and the Intellectual Class, who steer the revolt) collectively rises against the aristocratic class (usually a combination of the Politicians and the Wealthy).

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And because this pattern is so identifiable, any political historian back in 1990 could have predicted what would happen if America started to shift towards an aristocrat-peasant society: that within 2-3 decades the common man was going to revolt … So those 1990-era tycoon-capitalists began to embark on a plan to prevent the inevitable revolt …

… they developed a propaganda machine to manipulate the fate.

(At this point it is important to recognize that partnerships between the Working and Intellectual classes make for strange bedfellows … the tycoon-capitalists will identify and exploit this!)

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They decide that they need to get control of the Working Class before the forecast revolt will begin one day, and, most importantly, before the Working Class partners with its old ally-in-revolt, the Intellectual Class. And so were born FOX News and Rush Limbaugh.

Yes, those are Mayberry-Americans gettin dancing when they should be paying attention.

Rush Limbaugh and FOX News, the voices of the tycoon-capitalists’ propaganda machine, would be used to:

  • 1 – gain the trust of the Working Class,
  • 2 – direct them against the Intellectual Class.

And so once the revolt would finally happen (as history predicts), the Working Class would NOT go after the power class, but rather would go after their historical ally, the intellectuals. And this is the polarization that we have today.

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Some will argue that the tycoon-capitalists would not do this because in deflating the lower and middle classes, they would be shooting themselves in the foot by effectively impoverishing their consumer base. But that is only in a closed society where they necessarily need the American consumer. But America is in a global marketplace, and America’s 200 million potential consumers is small in comparison to the worlds roughly 3 billion in developed and developing countries.



Does the NRA Inhibit Constructive Dialog


If someone like me says, “gun regulation should be discussed”, some NRA person will respond, “you’re not american, you’re against freedom, you’re stupid, you think hugging criminals will work.” So to avoid being yelled at by my family and friends I, like millions of other people, just keep quiet! Consequently, our country has not had a real democratic discussion about guns and the 2nd Amendment.

Healthy discussions usually produce good answers. The NRA culture should not be afraid of the discussion if they believe that their approach is the right approach.

healthy discussions lead to good things

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There are 5 potential reasons for guns:
#1 – the Foreign Invaders argument – guns for militia members for protecting the homeland.
#2 – the Tyrannical Government argument – guns for a populace to thwart tyranny.
#3 – the Self-Defense argument – guns for individuals protecting themselves against each other.
#4 – the I Need Meat argument – guns for individuals that hunt.
#5 – the It’s Nice and Shiny argument – guns for sportsmen and collectors.
(Maybe there are more, but this is a start.)

We should discuss all 5, independently, from both a constitution-era point of view and from a modern-era point of view.

From a CONSTITUTION-era point of view:
#1is what is ‘written’ in the 2nd Amendment.
#1 & #2were both contextually relevant in 18th c., and both were discussed.
#3was neither relevant nor discussed in 18th c.
#4was relevant but not discussed in 18th c.
#5was neither relevant nor discussed in 18th c.

From a MODERN-era point of view:
#1we do not need anymore (our military is solid).
#2we have other mechanisms to prevent tyrannical governments.
#3fair enough, but only if we thoroughly analyze our entire society to understand why we have so many criminals in the first place, because possibly they are a byproduct of some sickness in our society, and maybe they are fixable … maybe.
#4fair enough, but only with the right comprehensive training.
#5fair enough, but only with the right comprehensive training.

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Gun Ownership Only With Qualified Training
Any reasonable person should be ok being required to be trained to own a weapon.

Basic gun ownership would require Level 1 training.
Level 1 training would be geared toward the most fundamental of gun claims: protecting the home.
Included in Level 1 firearms training should be psych evaluations and proper training about storing the gun in the home.
Level 1 might require 3 months of weekly sessions. Trainers would be certified by the NRA, but liable to civil and criminal courts for failure to uphold high standards (now you have a check & balance between the NRA’s desire to spread guns, and the public’s desire to have safe, qualified gun owners).

Level 1 would probably only cover low-shot hand guns, which are appropriate for home protection.

A Concealed Weapons Permit would require Level 2 training, specifically some type of Action-based Training (something that probably only military, police, and the most hardcore gun sportsmen ever get). Ab-T would last probably 20 hours, I don’t know, maybe 100.

Why should CWP owners be required to satisfy Level 2 requirements … because a CWP holder is implicitly saying, “I am taking my gun into the public, where all the action is, and if there is trouble I’m going to pull my weapon out into the public space with the intent to pull the trigger.” Therefore that person should have to prove that he/she can handle that action: people running, screaming, shots already being fired from some undetermined direction.

Level 2 would probably also only cover low-shot hand guns.

For hunters they would need a Level 3 certificate. For sportsmen, a Level 4 certificate. Etc.

What do you think about the idea of appropriate training for weapons permits?



Your 2nd Amendment Rights?! … what about donald trump’s??


I have a couple of enemies: the guy whose parking space I snaked this morning at the grocery store, and the occasional random mugger that tries to get my credit cards. But these enemies are simple and I can take care of them with a few pistol bullets into their guts. Easy.

Donald Trump, on the other hand, has complex enemies due to his fame and fortune. Anyone in his family would be a valuable ransom for well organized kidnappers, such as those damn mexican cartels who have demonstrated time and time again that they can organize and penetrate an enemy encampment, pulling off any number of different types of insurgency’s.

And because of this, Donald Trump cannot resolve to a simple pistol for his protection, or even a single assault rifle (which does no good when 20 armed mexicans come jumping over your fence). Fortunately, he has the 2nd amendment (recently re-interpreted by the SCOTUS (at the behest of the NRA)) giving him the right to arm himself accordingly: with rocket launchers, probably, and he may need Black Hawks too.

Wait … he can’t have these?! His rights are being infringed. We need to stop all this simple talk about assault rifles, and start focusing on the bigger picture. Donald I am with you: build your personal IED’s, and defend what is yours.

this guy needs more than a simple pistol to protect what’s his



Are you a responsible gun owner, or reckless … try this simple test


What’s your GORF score? Use this simple equation to find out …


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Divide:
x … the amount of Time that you talk about responsible gun ownership by
Y … the amount of Time that you talk about the 2nd Amendment.

If you get a number greater than 3.5, then you are a responsible gun owner.

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Why is this equation important in today’s gun conversation in America? Because over the last few years, apparently some shifts have occurred in our population demographics, and now it is difficult to distinguish between responsible gun owners and reckless gun owners.

Being able to distinguish between these two groups has important implications in our society. Hence my simple equation to help you figure out who is who … the GORF equation.

GORF is an acronym for “Gun-Owner Responsibility Factor”. I am leaving the equation in a simple form, though I should really re-work it to normalize its output, maybe using 0 or 1 as the benchmark value. But as it stands, the benchmark value is 3.5 (I’ll explain in a moment).

In slightly more algebraic notation, my GORF equation looks like this:
GORF = Trgh ÷ Tsar
Trgh is the amount of time u discuss Responsible Gun Handling,
Tsar is the amount of time u discuss Second Amendment Rights.

A good GORF value is 3.5 … If a person’s GORF value is less than 3.5 then that means that that person is reckless, and a danger to civil society; but above 3.5 means that that person is responsible and safe.



Are Weapon-Certification programs the solution


Are Weapon-Certification programs the solution that should make both sides happy:

  • they would enable weapon ownership for the respectful and law-abiding people … republicans smile
  • they would prevent weapon ownership for the reckless and unqualified people … democrats smile.

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How would a Weapon Certification Program work?

Suppose you want a pistol for home protection, a Level 1 Certification would probably be the appropriate certificate. It might require A) 10hours of classroom training, B) 10 hours of supervised firing range training, and C) bi-annual renewals.

Suppose you want a pistol for CWP, a higher level of certification would surely be required, such as, say, Level 4. And this certification would probably require a higher level of maturity, a higher level of skill, and a higher level of in-action experience.

And in theory, there can even be a Certification Program for military-grade weapons, say, maybe, Level 7 Certification.

Anyone caught without the appropriate Certification for their particular weapon will at least temporarily lose their weapon, and have up to 6 months, say, to complete an appropriate Certification Program to get their weapon back.

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What is interesting about Certification, is you can be certified without being “registered” … which a lot of the Tyranny-paranoids are concerned about.

Here is a funny, but poignant, example of how you could be certified for something, but NOT registered: I can very easily train you for 2 weeks on Vulgar-Burping, then give you the Certification to prove you are qualified, but never submit it to any national database of burpers; I, the Certifier, only keep a record in my file cabinet. Now, at some time later in the future, when you are in a McDonalds burping vulgarly, and then you get accosted, you can show the cops your Vulgar-Burping Certificate, and they will say ‘ok’ to you … your Certification is all you need.

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Here’s a little bit more about the Weapon’s Certification idea:

  • the Certification programs could be run by the NRA,
  • but the NRA would be liable to the people through our judicial system (civil and maybe even criminal).

So, suppose the NRA is the Certifying agency, and suppose that over the years they slowly relax their Certification Programs standards, certifying basically anyone and everyone. Then Bad Guys start exploiting the lax certification programs and begin mass murdering, the NRA would be liable in the courts to lawsuits from victim’s families. We all tout our judicial system as being the greatest in the world, so can’t we trust it to handle this particular aspect?

This judicial liability would keep the NRA in balance between:

  • their desire to sell guns at k-mart, and
  • civil people’s desire to have a sane experiences when they venture outside.

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Share with your friends if you feel these ideas have merit.