Snippets 4 & AMA 1200 13 May: hundreds of Auschwitz’s in a few hours... and the media cheers like the crowds of summer 1914...
Dan Wang on 'engineers of the soul'... GPT3, the scaling hypothesis... SW1 sex deviants... Baby P/child abuse coverups... Imminent trolley tax u-turn
[Updated 6/6, 1300, 2130, 2230, scroll down to Leadership Challenge.]
Here’s the previous 1, 2, 3. I’m going to stop making these snippets free for a while at least.
I’ve updated Tolstoy with some notes on Berg and Bilibin. I posted #4 on The Kill Chain. I’m slowly adding to #3 on Payne / nuclear weapons. For years people treated my insistence that nuclear war ought to be a top priority in SW1 as a sign of my eccentricty/‘madness’. Sadly it’s now extremely topical. You’ll have noticed that all the huge issues raised in the Kill Chain blog are almost totally absent from SW1 discussion on Ukraine. Procurement and management remain dirty words in SW1 despite covid and UKR. As I’ve said repeatedly, the most interesting and important aspect of the last three years is what Tyler Cowen calls the ‘numbness’ of the bureaucracies and old parties despite these massive crises. They’re paralysed not galvanised.
Writing this I realise I don’t even know who the Labour Shadow Defence Secretary or Foreign Secretary are three months into the biggest European war since 1945! If I google them will I even recognise them?… Ok, Lamy yes but noticed nothing he’s said for years, Healey never noticed at all. Both totally irrelevant. But then I’ve no idea of a single Labour policy on the cost of living either because Starmer like Boris just performs for the media all day with no sense of priorities or focus…
Before August I’m going to do something on the long-term future/rot of the Tories (I’ve got very Gordon Gecko ‘mixed emotions’ on this, like Larry Wilder going off a cliff … in my new Maserati), followups on the Trump project, some ideas you would see being discussed now if the old SW1 parties were not so rotten, and projects that people could work on / support to improve things other than ‘join one of the parties or civil service and try to change them’. There’s huge appetite to help improve politics/government but also disgust at the idea of committing oneself to the traditional paths and/or helping one of the old parties. I’ve been working on some ideas…
I’m also reading Walter Lippmann’s Public Opinion, Toby Ord’s The Precipe and Field Marshal Alanbrooke’s War Diaries (which I’ve skimmed but not properly read) and will share notes.
On 23 June I’m doing an event with the Orwell Foundation on lessons from Bismarck, their website has details… (Hopefully by then I’ll have published the first part of my chronology on Bismarck up to 1867 which I’ve been doing intermittently for over a decade.)
AMA Friday 13 May, 1200-1400. Substack has a new video feature so I’ll experiment with that.
Last autumn pundits were telling you to prepare for a decade of ‘unassailable Boris’ who had sorted out No10 with ‘grownups’ and ‘gripped’ Whitehall, his relationship with the Chancellor was solid, breaking the ‘no income tax’ guarantee was ‘popular’(!), and Boris had nothing to fear from the old Vote Leave team.
I told you No10 was a shitshow, would collapse in chaos, the PM and Chancellor relationship was broken, the tax increases would be a policy and political disaster particularly given the looming cost of living nightmare, and I said — I’ve sold all my shares, prepare for supply chain meltdown, Putin whacking Europe including over energy, energy spikes, and financial market chaos.
So if you want to be ahead of the game cancel your subscriptions to the useless old media and encourage people to subscribe here!
Child abuse coverups
MP sex deviants
GPT3, scaling hypothesis
Why Boris will rip up the Treasury spring numbers and have another emergency budget/SR…
This is how sanctions will be seen, first by voters and after a lag by SW1:
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