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Never Confuse Brains with a Bull Market: Bitcoin's Capitulation Phase

Over the previous week, bitcoin has declined a full 30 percent, marking a 78-percent decline from its peak back on December 17, 2017. 

This hasn't kept the bitcoin bulls and hodlers from trying to sound smart.

Faux crypto advisors still abound on YouTube, conducting spurious technical analyses and setting target buy-in prices for a speculative risk asset that is primarily owned and manipulated by a narrow segment of the population, that is visibly non-correlated against market developments, and that plainly lacks sufficient trading history and stability to support such public claims which serve exclusively as a platform for fame-hungry YouTubers to get in on the prediction front so they can look smart if the crypto asset, or cryptocurrency, trades accordingly. 

Meanwhile, these talking heads have absolutely no idea about the asset's utility value, yet they stake claims about target levels which essentially operate from the yet-untested assumption of utility. 

Moreover, the crypto …
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Bitcoin: An Ornately Compelling Transfer of Wealth

In a 2017 interview with Fox Business, venture capitalist Peter Thiel identified bitcoin (XBT) as the "cyber equivalent to gold." 

While talk of this comparison has endured for just about as long as the cryptocurrency itself, Thiel's statement showcases more acutely just how highly imaginative and seductive the mental gymnastics have become: not only have successful entrepreneurs bought into its functionality, they have also endorsed a comparison between one asset that is usable in and of itself, absent trade, and another whose usability stems exclusively from its tradability.

The fact that these figureheads are so confident plainly speaks volumes about an experimental asset, or cryptocurrency, whose identity, use case and value change by the minute. 

Of course, when the value of any asset proves wildly unpredictable, so, too, diminishes the tradability of that asset, especially when bidders intend to exercise that vaunted store-of-value feature.

Ultimately, a store of value…

Laws Lead to Tyranny, Not to Nirvana

In a recently-published video, a popular YouTuber strikes the ironic claim that there ought to be additional laws to protect his interests while he is admittedly speeding. He understandably denounces the use of retreads after his caravan of exotic cars is impacted by one as they roar down the highway. 

For those readers who are unfamiliar with tire retreads, also known as recaps or remolds, they are a relatively-inexpensive re-manufacturing process for replacing treads on worn tires. They are commonly used on transport vehicles around the world for their enormous cost savings, a function of considerable material savings and even significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, the total of which incidentally results in the minimization of environmental impact and the physical waste that ends up in landfills. 

Notwithstanding this thread of logic, some impassioned drivers follow their emotions to the untested and wholly-unexamined conclusion that the world would be vastly improved by …

Power to the Parasites: SF Bay Area Ballot Measures Will Penalize Property Owners for Undeveloped Land

The residents of Oakland, California, and other nearby Bay Area cities, are considering a ballot proposal which centers around the assignment of a $6,000 penalty per parcel to property owners whose property fails to satisfy the City’s arbitrary use standards for a period of no less than 50 days each year: the proposal applies to both developed and undeveloped properties, which equates to penalizing people for failing to build, when it is precisely the existing regulations, compliance costs and zoning laws which make it so prohibitively expensive and challenging to build in the first place. 

I know this firsthand, as I have worked closely with property owners on such developments in the housing space; the permitting and engineering fees are exorbitant for even basic projects, let alone something as considerable as homebuilding or the development of multi-unit complexes. 

As it turns out, the terms of the proposal may also prove too ambiguous to secure the desired ends or to be actionable…

Stimulus Spending and the Keynesian Multiplier: The Thirteenth Stroke of the Clock

A new television commercial proposes a new way to add time to our day. 

In the commercial, the woman presents a generic clock which shows the addition of a thirteenth hour between the twelve and the one. 

Humorously, the space between the twelve and the thirteen, and likewise between the thirteen and the one, is precisely half of the distance between every other hour interval, and unless the gearing has been modified to accommodate this change, this implies exclusively that the twelfth and thirteenth hours will merely split that same hour, allotting only 30 minutes to each before the one o’clock hour. 

What’s more, this achieves nothing in the way of actually extending the day, serving only to unimaginatively obfuscate the reliable measuring apparatus which humbly reflects the average amount of time for the earth to complete a single rotation around its axis. 

While we could surely re-engineer the clock to accommodate a thirteenth hour, this change will only alter the significance of time…

Down the Rabbit Hole of Gender Pronouns

Another subject has entered the social scene in a more meaningful capacity than ever imagined for the most basic of questions about personal identity. 

The subject has entered casual conversation, the workplace and even schools, where teachers and professors have been encouraged or even required to gently inquire into the gender identities of their students, so as to avoid mistakenly referring to them by the traditional pronouns which have gotten the job done for so many centuries. 



Well, according to the fresh crop of Cal-Berkeley enrollees, there’s apparently nothing the average person can say or do that won’t offend a member of the protected class. 

And gender is yet another form of unrestrained abuse running rampant in our community, where some individuals have expressed that these two words fail to adequately represent them. 

Well, here’s the cold, hard truth: they were never really designed to represent anyone; they were designed to represent chromosomal composition and reproductive…

Institutional Racism: The Sasquatch of Political Folklore

A great confusion has arisen out of the clamor of political debate, one which presupposes that any dismissal of the merits of “institutional racism” somehow equates to one’s rejection of personal struggle. 

Whereas the struggle of any individual remains always and everywhere unique and wholly personal, his common bond of complexion with others who have struggled serves inadequately as the basis for any argument which regards this commonality as the cause, or as the reason, for that veritable struggle. 

To condemn the unidentifiable and nebulous abstraction, then, by castigating an unnamed institution which persists beyond our specific capacity to recognize its power, serves only to absolve individuals of their personal responsibility, to shift blame and culpability to a specter which exists only by the creative designs of our imaginations, which exists as the scapegoat for all outcomes popularly maligned as undesirable. 

This unactionable practice, then, swiftly and categorically excuses…