A ruling system that prevents dissent and locks the world into stagnation and inevitable failure

Tuesday, February 2nd, 2021

Back in October, 2018, John Robb looked at an insurgency at the crossroads:

Trump’s open source #insurgency often appears unstoppable. All of the traditional methods of political opposition have proven unable to damage it for more than a few days (at most). However, in late October, we saw the outlines of a dynamic that suggests that may not be true for much longer.


In the last few weeks of October, we saw the following pattern:

An uptick in domestic terrorism connected to Trump’s #insurgency. The Florida Van Man Mail Bomber targeted vocal political opponents. The Kentucky Kroger Terrorist killed 2. The Pittsburgh Synagogue Terrorist killed 11.

To minimize the damage to the insurgency, Trump rapidly shifted the national conversation through something best termed a fast transient. In this case, the fast transient was a proposal to end birthright citizenship through Presidential edict. On cue, the insurgency and the resistance immediately began to battle over the proposal.

However, something new happened. Technology companies, from Facebook to Paypal to GoDaddy, took the opportunity to rapidly deplatform (physically disconnect) many of the people (Proud Boys, etc.) and companies (Gab, etc.) it deemed to be potentially violent.

This new dynamic may be the beginning of the end for the insurgency since it turns a strength of the insurgency into a debilitating weakness.


The big technology companies represent the third major force in this conflict — in addition to the insurgency and the resistance. Currently, their main source of power is in the physical dimension (attrition warfare). They have the ability to disconnect the insurgency at scale and they just demonstrated they are willing to do that. These violent attacks have provided the technology companies with the justification they need to enter this online war on the side of #resistance.

If this dynamic of violence continues, the global technology companies will join this online war. Here’s what this would mean:

The technology companies would begin to treat the language and the symbology of #insurgency as signs of online terrorism. This would give them the green light to ruthlessly censor it (within seconds of it being posted) and deplatform the people who post it. Moreover, this would be done at scale (tens of thousands a day if necessary) and at the level of individual conversations.

The social AIs being built at the major networks would inevitably end up oriented towards dampening the #insurgency. Slowly at first, but more aggressively as the AIs mature. This capability would likely become exportable, and provide a stealth means of redirecting countries like Brazil, the Philippines, Italy, etc. away from insurgent politics and towards corporate standards.

Efforts by the big technology companies to actively maintain social stability through social AIs, makes us extremely vulnerable to a long night. A world dominated by a system that through naive utopianism or through an aggressive takeover by populist leaders, narrows public thought down to a single, barren, ideological acceptable framework. A ruling system that prevents dissent and locks the world into stagnation and inevitable failure as it runs afoul of reality and human nature.

Conventional air action could be decisive only when coupled with decisive ground action

Monday, February 1st, 2021

Air power, in the mountains of North Korea, could not stop the continuing reinforcement of the CCF front, T. R. Fehrenbach explains (in This Kind of War), any more than it had been able completely to choke off the German armies in Italy during World War 2:

It was only — as in Italy, at Anzio and other places — when ground action put inexorable pressure on enemy ground forces, forcing them to move or to displace, that conventional tactical air could come into its own. Massed to attack, the CCF became vulnerable. When they broke through U.N. lines, and their artillery and supply were forced to move out into the open, to displace, U.N. air could pounce upon them and chew them mercilessly. When they were forced by U.N. ground pressure to retreat, to stream down the roads and corridors of escape, air again could inflict deadly wounds.

Conventional air action, in Korea, could be decisive only when coupled with decisive ground action. It is impossible to interdict the battlefront, in mountains, of an army that eats only a handful of rice and soya beans and carries its ammunition forward piggyback.