Galerie

laurentbelkacem:

This is what CHF 400,000.-, in 5 cents coins, looks like. #15tons #rbi #revenudebase #grundeinkommen #scroogesyndrom

I’m sincerely for the universal basic income, given I, unlike most of my classical liberal friends, have more working poor friends than bankers or CEOs, and I really think that a non-arbitrary social safety net would be a lot better for our society than these stupid social allowances. 

I also see UBI as a way to get rid of really hard, stupid jobs with bad salaries while rewarding at last the volunteer work whose a lot of the benefits are going back to the formal economy.

But I took the time to read about the proposed implementation and the awful amount of taxation involved in that new system, and I just can’t, in whole conscience, support that proposition as it is presented for the 5th of June votation.

Vidéo

I’ve stumbled upon this video of a conservative Q&A and debate at UMASS, thanks to the contextual sidecolumn of Youtube, and I found it quite interesting.
Of course, the three anti-SJW speakers point of view can’t be taken totally in good faith (their bias are quite clear), and I certainly can’t be counted as a Republican supporter (first because I don’t believe in representative democracy, second because I’m strongly relativist, third because of all things, while attached to traditions, I’m certainly not reactionary, and fourth because I don’t believe happiness and wellness are prioritary the expression of materialism) ; but anyway, some good points about freedom of expression and the necessary respect of balance of the whole spectrum of opinions (about the double standards in the media – i.e. the recent Facebooktrends fiasco, the official victims trump cards played by a lot of minorities activists, etc.) were made.
Well, whatever your opinion about Social Justice, conservatism or feminism is, the whole show is quite entertaining.

Vidéo

NO WOTAN, NO CRY

Roxy Music – A Song For Europe

Ecce momenta 
Illa mirabilia 
Quae captabit 
In aeternum 
Memor 
Modo dolores 
Sunt in dies 
Non est reliquum 
Vero tantum 
Comminicamus 
Perdita 
Tous ces moments 
Perdus dans l’enchantement 
Qui ne reviendront 
Jamais
Pas d’aujourd´hui pour nous 
Pour nous il n’y a rien 
À partager 
Sauf le passé

Question: Given you have a vision on individuality and self-ownership, how come that also you support the abolition of intellectual rights property? isn’t that a dichotomy? –I also do recognize the difference in when another person creates a total new work out of a previous content (found footage), e.g. What’s Up, Tiger Lily? from Woody Allen; but well the creators deserve to have their property on their creations too, e.g. I’m glad Led Zeppelin music doesn’t pop up in bon bril sponges ads

Private property is a very important thing, as it is one of the tools that help us, with the market mechanics of offer and demand, to deal with the relative scarcity of material things.

Intellectual property, that is to say, property of reproductible, intangible things (i.e. thoughts, ideas, intellectual works, litterary or musical arrangements of words or notes, etc.) makes no sense.

Ideas are just that, ideas. They are free, in both senses of the word in English. They are the creation’s basis, but are only processed through technique (and sometimes, talent). That can cost money. To develop a new medicine costs litteraly billions in any currency (a situation mostly due to States’ regulations and market distortion, but that’s another story), to write a novel a thousand hours, etc. 

So you invested a lot in your creation – years of study and practice to aquire mastership in your domain, so you should be rewarded, isn’t it ? Still nope.
I don’t deny you the right to exploit your creation. My problem is with the monopoly (which in the case of litterary works, can go for seventy years after the death of the author, plus ten years for each time Mickey Mouse is about to drop in the public domain). 

Even without taking the economic perspectives in account (“piracy costs billions to Hollywood” or other bullshit statistics), these monopolies have two very deleterious consequences on the society and the market : laziness on the part of the creators, since they have limited competition, and legal bullying of the rest of the competition. A third, much less spectacular, lays in the case of orphan works, which tend to just disappear forever (especially if they are on fragile supports, like microsillon, celluloid or low quality-high acidic paper). On the other hand, Germany and Japan in the end of the XIXth Century and their frantic creative activities are good exemple of what a society devoid of IP protection can offer us.

People using your work without your authorisation is not a problem – you’re still able to play your song, publish your book, distribute your movie. What can be problematic for you, the creator, is the competition with either other artists or parasits. But is that competition that bad ? I won’t speak from a moral position, but in general, it’s quite healthy. Just an exemple : you are in a situation where you have to chose between two concerts.  Would you go to watch, I don’t know, Led Zeppelin, or a high-school cover band of Led Zeppelin (a very talented one) – even if Led Zep’s ticket are ten times more expensive than those from Laid Zaip, your local Bishop Kelley HS (go Comets !) cover band from Tulsa, Oklahoma ?

Would it be a catastroph if some toilet paper brand pick a very exquisite song (i.e. Nina Simone’s Feeling Good) ? It would be in poor taste, but it’s quite easy to avoid advertisement these days (first step : kill your TV, second step : install an adblocker in your webbrowser). And there also would be a big difference between the use of the song for a publicity purpose and the approval of the artist (i.e. Nina Simone singing a song about toilet paper for a huge sum of money in a TV ad).

What if someone remix your work and make it better ? Would it mean your work would get more fans ? Would it be an awful situation ? Exposition (included through reproduction) as a value in itself, as is the fact to be original (even if being “the” original is not immediately recognized).

In the pre-Industrial and the Industrial Eras, what costed and created money was the production and distribution of works. Radio-broadcasting or concerts for songs, composition, printing and shipment for books, the building of specific venues for movies, etc. 

Today, all this system is obsolete. You don’t need radio to promote your songs. You don’t need studios to make a movie. You don’t need galleries to show the world your paintings, photos, sculptures. You don’t need a publisher to write a book and sell it. All these middlemen can be useful in their own ways, but you just don’t have to go through them anymore.

So, we are going back to an art without market value, to quote the situationnist Michel Bounan. What will it change for most artists/creators ? Nothing. Since two hundred years, creators are exploited by distributors, in a parasitic relation that would like to seem symbiotic. I know a lot of artists, and particulary musicians, and I could tell you tales of how they got raped by their labels and how little their share of the benefits is. 

Of course, you have an elite of artists that got huge fortunes from their work. Of course, you have thousands of people in the world that can live on the dividendes of their work. They are not rich, but at least they don’t have to get a menial job to pay the bills. Cue to the 99% others, that will never see their work, as good as it is, produce a single cent. The end of IP would have no consequence for all these people, who will go on with their art because it has a value in itself, just not a mercantile one. 

If you want to be a professional artist, all I’m saying is unpleasant. But look ! all is not bleak, even without the protection of a monopolistic rent of situation (which profits anyway to a tiny amount of people, most of them not being creators but mere logistics/marketing people).

There are some ways to make money of your creation, if you’re really good at it.
You can still market and exploit your creation. The bad news is that will probably cost you a lot of money and work (from the lack of economy scales and the necessity to find or create your own market), the good news is that you will be no more depending of a syndication system that will give you back a mere 2-to-5 % of the benefits of your work. 

For exemple : your compact discs are selling no more ? Tour. Concerts are very lucrative (even, surprisingly enough, for tiny formations), and are a good way to meet fans and sell merchandising. Are you a writer ? E-books cost almost nothing to produce, and can be sold in huge quantities for a very small fee, providing great benefits. Conferences are the concerts equivalent, etc.
Patronage/sponsorship is also a possibility. Either for a rich person that would get a positive image in exchange of his money, or a lot of poor people that will be happy to be part of the creation (i.e. crowdfunding).

Means of creations and distribution are really democratized today – for the best (the end of the cultural Majors and States’ monopoly on creation) and the worst (youtubers/doctor Who/Harry Potter fanfictions finding their audience).

Tl;dr : 

– I don’t mind the right to exploit intellectual creation ;
– I don’t mind the right to pretend being the inventor of something ;
– intellectual property protection is – maybe counterintuitively – mostly harmful for the creators and the public.

I’m not a pirayatollah, and I’m known to be very pragmatic – I could live with monopolistic commercial IP with a very reduced time (less than seven years).
Sorry about the grammatical errors and some intellectual shortcuts, I can elaborate on some points if you really want it.

jungerian-tangent:

laurentbelkacem:

no-hearth:

Anarchists and fascists agree: Ernst Jünger is alright.

C’est juste.

oddly enough, yes – despite the fact that he was avidly opposed to the NSDAP, rejected their advances numerous times and wrote a book in 1939 which was essentially a thinly-veiled allegory on hitler and his cronies

and despite the fact that Junger’s whole ‘anarch’ philosophy is murky and ill-defined at best / incoherent and self-defeating at worst (just like anarchism). i mean, he even said it himself:

“But the anarchic remains, at the very bottom, as a mystery, usually unknown even to its bearer.”

/everyone wants to claim him but at the end of the day no one really owns him

Wir werden alle nicht Ernst Juenger

Anarchique, chacun  l’est  :  c’est  justement  ce qu’il  a  de normal.  Toutefois,  dès son  premier jour, son père et sa mère, l’État et la société lui tracent des limites. Ce sont là des rognements, des mises en perce de l’énergie innée auquel nul n’échappe. Il faut bien s’y résigner. Pourtant, le principe d’anarchie reste au fond, mystère dont le plus souvent son détenteur même n’a pas la moindre idée. Il peut jaillir de lui sous forme de lave, peut le détruire ou le libérer.
Il s’agit ici de marquer les différences : l’amour est anarchique, le mariage non. Le guerrier est anarchique, mais non l’assassinat. Le Christ est anarchique, saint Paul ne l’est pas. Comme cependant l’anarchie, c’est la normale, elle existe aussi en saint Paul et explose parfois violemment en lui. Ce ne sont pas là des antithèses, mais des degrés. L’histoire mondiale est mue par l’anarchie. En un mot : l’homme libre est  anarchique, l’anarchiste ne l’est pas.
(…)
L’anarchiste  est  le partenaire  du monarque  qu’il  rêve de  détruire.  En frappant la personne, il affermit l’ordre de la succession. Le suffixe « isme » a une acceptation restrictive : il accentue le vouloir, aux dépens de la substance. Je dois cette note au grammairien Thorfen, ratiocineur par excellence. La contrepartie positive de l’anarchiste, c’est l’anarque. Celui­-ci n’est pas le partenaire du monarque, mais son antipode, l’homme que le puissant n’arrive pas à saisir, bien que lui aussi soit dangereux. Il n’ est pas l’adversaire du monarque, mais son pendant. Le monarque veut régner sur une foule de gens, et même sur tous ; l’anarque sur lui­ même, et lui seul. Ce qui lui procure un attitude objective, voire sceptique envers le pouvoir, dont il laisse défiler devant lui les figures ­ intangibles, assurément, mais non  sans émotion intime, non sans passion historique.
(…)
L’axiome d’un Anglo­-Saxon concernant l’égalité entre les hommes me revint en  mémoire. Il la cherche, non pas dans la répartition sans cesse changeante de la  puissance et des moyens d’agir, mais dans le fait constant que chacun peut tuer chacun.
(…)
Dans les mots que renforce le suffixe « isme », une certaine prétention se traduit, une tendance volontariste, et souvent une hostilité  a priori. Le mouvement devient tumultueux aux dépens de la substance. Ce sont là des mots pour sectaires, pour ceux qui n’ont lu  qu’un  seul  livre, pour ceux qui « jurent fidélité à  leur drapeau et se battent pour la cause, quoi qu’il advienne » , bref, pour les types du représentant et du voyageur de commerce en lieux communs. Une conversation avec quelqu’un qui se présente sous le nom de réaliste se termine le plus souvent de manière fâcheuse. Il a de  la chose,  comme l’idéaliste de  l’idée  ou l’égoïste du  moi, une  notion  bornée.  La liberté est mise sous étiquette. C’est tout aussi vrai du rapport de l’anarchiste à l’anarchie. (…)
Il n’y a pas plus à espérer de la société que de l’État. Le salut est dans l’individu.

From Eumeswil, quickly handpicked waking up. I agree on your conclusion (one of his most interesting biographical point is probably is refusal to submit to denazification process in the hands of the occupation troops, after the war, test that he would have passed with flying colors, if only because of his French supporters).

Galerie

1-of-these-days:

mapsontheweb:

Proposal for a greater Switzerland by the Swiss People’s Party.

@laurentbelkacem

Ok… Switzerland could take over Savoie, I guess… but only if France takes the burden of Geneva and Jura.

Joke aside, it’s quite a stupid idea. Like several antinations (i.e. Belgium or Afghanistan), Switzerland is mostly defined by what it is not (or what is it against) – and that essence it’s mostly contained by the natural borders provided by Jura, Alps or Rhine.

The only thing in common with France, Germany or Italy is the languages of the three main Swiss linguistic areas. But culturally, the difference is overwhelming. Even with the Roestigraben, a Welsch and a Bourbine have more in common than they could ever have with a French or a German citizen, respectively.

UE could have worked if it has chosen to follow the Swiss confederation model, and Switzerland is failing because it’s following the UE model.

10x37x135

so i hear the Swiss govt is telling citizens to arm up now? any truth to this? also arent you guys pretty well armed? my uncle dated a swiss women for years she was not shy around rifles

@10x37x135

Not the government (even if a lot of antigun politicians lost their jobs at last elections) whose main occupation is to suck Europe metaphorical dick, but André Blattmann, the Chief of Armed Forces.

There are already a lot of private and militia guns in the hands of Swiss citizens, and the rights to have guns are still protected in the law (contrary to most European states, it’s a right, not a privilege) but there are a lot of dangers for Switzerland gun rights in the future :

– a lot of gun rights were lost because of the European integration (Schengen) – i.e. constitutional carry in a lot of Cantons, over-the-counter purchase of full-automatic weapons, use of silencers, shooting on public lands, etc. And against all odds, given the situation of Europe, on the verge of civil breakdown, suffering an economic shutdown and where most countries are democracies in name only… a lot of our brilliant Bernese people still believe in the European project. It’s not impossible that, if the semi-automatic weapons ban is adopted in Europe, Switzerland will follow up (with maybe exemption for active militia rifles).

– the weight of big cities (Lausanne, Geneva, Zuerich, etc.) more liberal, against the rural areas, more conservative.

– the weight of the legal alien population, barred from guns rights (this interdiction is quite stupid, but real).

– gun control is creeping through bureaucratic ways – the law protects the right for any citizen (and long-term resident) to buy a gun, provided he’s not a criminal nor have mental health problems. But guns are now registered, you have to ask for a costly permit before buying most kind of guns, CCW licences are almost impossible to obtain, we are stuck with FMJ ammos, etc. [Edit : None of these gun control measures had a positive effect on gun violence, violent crime, suicide, etc.]

– the culture of pornography of violence (very prevalent in France, for exemple, where two centuries of an incredibly strong gun culture, heritage of the revolution and dozens of wars were wiped in less than a generation and replaced by either pathologic hoplophobia or unhealthy fascination for the guns and their destruction potential) – this culture is strongly counterbalanced by the excellent gun education provided by Swiss Army, but a lot of young people just avoid to do their military times these days.

– a huge part of Swiss gun culture comes from the militia system and the integration of the military thing in the society and vice-versa. But today, a lot of citizens contest even the idea of a Swiss army (which is of course not devoid of problems, and can be a huge waste of money and time for the society in general and some individuals in particular). So this culture is strong, but fragile. Most shooting ranges are military in function. Some people are satisfied by having only their military service pistol/rifle at home. A lot of Swiss shooters are sportmen/sportwomen, and would find absolutely ridiculous the idea of using their gun in self-defense. The few civilian shooting ranges available (were you can use all kind of guns, not only the service ones) are tiny and terribly costly (think about 100 bucks for an hour of renting a lane, including ammunition) and building regulations make almost impossible to create a lot more of them.

tl;dr : yes, a lot of people have a lot of guns in Switzerland (I don’t know a lot of people that have less than ten guns at home), but our rights are under threat because a lot of citizens don’t want to exercise them (for political, ethical or just apathical reasons) or just don’t understand why they (the rights and the guns alike) are useful to safeguard Switzerland’s democracy, liberties and security of the country and its population.

Galerie

Farmers want to produce and feed – but not to die.