With the war in Ukraine still far from over, many ask if starting it was rational. Some experts claim it was. They reconstruct the possible logical thinking of the Russian political and military elite. They acknowledge that rational does not always mean good or moral. One of those experts is Professor John Mearsheimer, with whom I disagreed recently. This time, I have to agree: Putin’s rationality was that of a criminal who believed he could go unpunished.
Elon Musk complains that ADL accuses X of tolerating antisemitic posts. There always had been people who hate others who differ by appearance, religion, or views. But not always intolerance finds a welcoming audience. As a political writer of sharp opinions, I noticed increased hatred from people disagreeing with me. Hence, I believe that antisemitism might be on the rise, too. Behind that is the worsening economic situation of most Americans. Due to the collusion of the media and politics, Americans do not have sincere public discussions about their problems. Prognoses are gloomy. ADL acts as if they do not know that monsters wake up when the reason is asleep. Musk aspires to fix it through public debates on X. He cannot ignore the reality to succeed. Not liking the facts, ADL tries to undermine Musk’s efforts and, by that, supports spreading antisemitism.
In 2009, when Obamacare was proposed, I put a lot of effort into understanding the muddle of our health care policy. I learned a lot from John C. Goodman. His book, “Priceless,” is not easy to read, but it is a must to know the basics. His lecture, which I attended, was eye-opening. I subscribe to his newsletter.
Trying to combine the ideas of Amy Finkelstein with the concepts of John C. Goodman is like finding a way that certain cars follow the right-hand traffic rule while others follow the left-hand traffic rule on the same streets. We have it now in health care, which is precisely why it does not work. The left is not right about health care. The right is wrong in seeking compromises instead of promoting a full-blown free market solution.
There are two objectives in governing. The first is creating a political environment where individuals pursuing their happiness can enrich themselves and the nation. The second is to distribute that wealth in a way so even more people can multiply it. After all, this was how America became great the first time.
Reagan understood it. His decisions stimulated wealth growth. His successors screwed up the distribution part. Too many Americans did not participate in that prosperity. We have very few profusely rich who can easily exploit American opportunities. A shrinking middle class can hardly do it because Americans there are struggling from sliding to a dependency on ongoing government support.
None of that understanding one could find from the mouths of GOP presidential candidates, regardless if one watched them on Fox News or on X.
Ukraine needs a miracle to win the war, claims once respected UPI. The core argument is that Russia will not act on its imperial aspirations weakened by the war. Germany was weak at the time of Munich. Not a year later, after taking over Czechia. Russia is weakened now. But it will not be after subduing Ukraine. Harlan Ullman, claiming to be an expert, cannot see farther than the end of his nose.
This article is one of many confusing opinions and contradictory predictions in the media. Ukrainians have a long tradition of being skillful warriors. They know the terrain and the circumstances. They know their resources, and most of all, they know their enemy. Can we agree they know better than the backseat drivers thousands of miles away? Just give them what they ask for. And shut up.
Germany and Japan started WWII believing they could fulfill their imperial aspirations by war. Putin did the same. After WWII, Germany and Japan were incorporated into the peaceful worldwide community. I do not hear Germans or Japanese complaining.
We should offer the same to Russia and repeat it whenever Ukraine gets military help. Russians can depose Putin tomorrow and start building prosperity in Russia, as Germany and Japan have done. Or they will do it after continuing the war to the last soldier killed.
To maintain prosperity, the worldwide community cannot accept war as a way of doing business. The Russians can accept it now because it makes sense or under duress after a humiliating military defeat. There is no other option.
The answer seems obvious; they want a bigger cut of the money the studios make on movies. Behind that request is an assumption that one can make a decent profit in movie-making when paying creators as much as they ask. But, if this is the truth, why no one does it already? With modern technology, the entry threshold is lower than ever before. Hot cash is burning the pockets of angel investors. Why are they not jumping on the opportunity? If actors and writers are correct, the free market does not work in the movie-making industry. Why? Why does no one in the media ask that the strikers?
Poles have a better version of the “fight fire with fire” adage. It is “knock out a jammed wedge with another wedge.” Poles shortened it to “klina klinem,” “a wedge with a wedge” in English. I prefer the Polish version because it emphasizes work, not fighting. The fight is about the destruction of the adversary. Work is about getting better results faster and cheaper. Hence, “a wedge with a wedge” better describes the approach we should take with AI. We should use it as a wedge to deal with problems we did not resolve with human intelligence, to detect AI’s “hallucinations,” and stop villains. It means those deploying AI with a dose of their human intelligence will benefit from AI more than others. What is wrong with that?
The Supreme Court asks Americans to pay their bills
President Biden tried to be generous in canceling or lowering $400 billion in student loans. The Supreme Court stopped that attempt to take money from people that pay their bills and give it to those who do not. No one had a gun at their head when taking loans. The only justification for forgiving student loans could be that the government made them easy to get. Politicians wanted to make education accessible for those who could not afford it otherwise. The opposite happened; with easy loans, colleges raised their tuition. Paying with borrowed funds was easier than with hard-earned money. With the Fourth of July approaching, the Supreme Court reminded us that self-sustained people founded the Republic to keep things that way. Or, as no one repeats anymore: “Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.”
With every major invention, there were fears that it would destroy fragile human society. For some, trains, movies, planes, atomic energy, and even simple bicycles were evil forces. The woman on the bike could easily avoid the prying eyes of the village. Demoralization seemed almost certain. Today it is AI, artificial intelligence. Thanks to AI, computers can do tasks that previously only humans could do. Some will abuse it just as women did when they were given a bike. It depends on human intelligence and wisdom. As long as we have it, there is no need to worry. The eagerness of politicians to protect us from AI is worrying. They better use AI to uncover what they screwed up now that fewer Americans value higher education. To prosper today, we must be smarter. The government cannot order it to happen.
Many tell us what to think. I ask my readers to be skeptical. Question me and others.