Friday, July 05, 2013

An email, explaining an argument from earlier in the evening.
I've never paid market rent in nyc. No trader would accept anything less.
If traders are the model, my experience becomes more and more rare.
If my landlords are the model, my experience becomes more common.
Its my empiricism vs his rationalism. D. speaks from the imperative. I speak from the descriptive.
Its that simple
I'd been arguing with a right wing Israeli, a Russian Jew, about economics and the market. He referred again and again to "the way the world is", or "the way the world works", and said I was an idiot, living in a fantasy world where morality mattered. He kept asking me if I knew how much of the market was made up of computerized trading. I kept saying the number itself didn't matter for my argument; what  mattered was that the percentage has gone up exponentially and allowing that had been a matter of policy decisions made by people who could have chosen otherwise.

D.'s economic theories and political sentiments follow the same template and are just as short-sighted. He supports Israel's partnership with Saudi Arabia, just as Zionists' attempted a partnership with the Nazis.  I said Israel in effect is backing Al Qaeda against Hezbollah. He said yes. He respects Hezbollah for defending their people.  I asked if his respect was similar to Eichmann's respect for the Jews. He said yes.

Societies and markets can be mature or not, depending on the people.

Reuters. Ginsburg vows to resist pressure to retire
Brushing off political calculations, she said, "It really has to be, ‘Am I equipped to do the job?' ... I was so pleased that this year I couldn't see that I was slipping in any respect." She said she remains energized by her work as the senior liberal, a position she has held since 2010 when Justice John Paul Stevens retired, and calls being a justice "the best job in the world for a lawyer." 
She has previously said she wanted her tenure to at least match the nearly 23 years of Justice Louis Brandeis, which would get her to April 2016, and said she had a new "model" in Justice Stevens, who retired at age 90 after nearly 35 years on the bench.
If you build your logic around the lowest common denominator it becomes hard to imagine anything higher. To say that politicians "should" value something more than their own short term interests is to no longer make arguments that can be defined as "value free". Republicans see their duty to the party now as more important than their duty to the state. Yet it's difficult for liberals to criticism them specifically for that because demanding more is accepted tacitly if not openly as unreasonable. 
I've read the same arguments for years about presidential power. It's seen as illogical to think that Obama should choose to cede power back to congress. Naturalism of this sort leads to moral passivity. 
"It really has to be, ‘Am I equipped to do the job?'

The question is, "What are my responsibilities to others, to the principles we share and to the future." Ginsburg is being a narcissistic ass.  Performative reinforcement works both ways.

"Marking to the mean puts downward pressure on the mean."

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