Archive | September, 2017

Zero/Negative Sum Gain Gaming – Bane of Society

11 Sep
Zero/Negative Sum Gain Gaming – Bane of Society


2017 September 10
I should be working on something else.
But I came here, to my favorite haunt, despite the fervor of the annual festival on the street, to work on some business.
A casual acquaintance asks why I push the dog away; it causes me to launch into a quiet little talk about, “no”, I actually like dogs; it’s the dog ‘owners’ I frequently have disagreements with. You aren’t allowed to smoke on this back patio, since a new aggressive law came into affect; so you can’t smoke within 9 metres of the door. Without discussing the merits of the law, I can say that most people respect this law. It is also against the law to have dogs in a restaurant, which this place is technically classified, but there is no end to grief for the staff here, when this is mentioned to a ‘patron’ who is so special, and their dog(s) is so special, that … well, they don’t think it should apply to them; furthermore, “…it is a stupid law, made by stupid people, and I won’t come here again, and I’ll tell all of my (dog owning) friends NEVER to ever come here, if you don’t let my Fifi stay with me while I’m getting a coffee…”., blah, blah, blah!

She says, “well, we all have our problems”, suggesting I have a problem.
It’s negative sum gain gaming”, I say. I’m just against that, where somebody, or some group, takes privileges that are controlled, for the greater betterment of all, at cost to all of the people who respect obeying the control, because it is for the betterment of all, BUT THEY END UP PAYING ANYWAYS! Just so the bitch can bring her Fifi, and all of the other bitches who ‘get exception(s)’, while the other people ‘toe the line’.

Dogs in society, cities specifically, are a good example.
In addition to occasionally ‘stepping in it’ literally, everyone, knowing this will likely eventually happen, have to self-repress themselves, conduct themselves with a bit less abandon and carefreeness, so that they don’t ‘step in it’. Even if 100% of dog owners cleaned up after their pets 100% of the time (never going to happen), there are a large number of other ‘unpleasantnesses’, one might say, i.e. things that make one’s quality of life lower, associated with dogs in the city; economists call these ‘negative externalities’, and they could be dogs barking (loudly) through the night, or even in the day, dogs aggressively snarling, biting, and otherwise terrorizing random, faultless passersby, etc. There was a cold winter a few years ago (rare these days, but that’s another story), I remember when the thaw came, a ghastly vapour came up from a large (aren’t they all, these days) ‘leash-free’ area in the valley. Without being certain, I find it difficult to believe that it was benign. What about the people who ‘walk’ their dog in the school yards? In my municipal jurisdiction, ALL school areas have prohibitions against dogs; all of them! But if it is open, ‘they will come’; not only will they come, but they will take care of the business, which was the only reason, for which they came, namely, pissing and shitting their dogs. It is difficult to imagine that these activities do NOT increase the health risks of the grounds where the children play.
I’m not even going to approach how the cost born to the city for maintenance, solely for dog-ownership ‘negative externalities’, are shared equally, whether you own a dog or not.
Why should the people who do NOT own a dog have to share in the financial costs, on top of everything else, just so a entitled minority (admittedly a large minority), can get their… ‘benefits’ from their dog ‘ownership’?
Is that fair?
I don’t think it is.
Even in the extremely remote possibility that the total benefits accrued by the dog owners was equal to the ‘costs’ direct, i.e. tax $$$s, and negative externalities, it would still be a zero sum gain.
And zero sum gain sucks too!
Because it is effectively a transfer of benefits from one groups, in the form of tax dollars and impacts to quality of life, both without any offsetting benefit, to another group, who theoretically gain benefit from having a dog. It should be noted that in many cases, the dog owners have the same costs in tax dollars and negative overall impacts to their quality of life, as those who don’t have a dog. But one must assume that the dog owner is willing to bear these costs for the sake of having the benefits derived from having the dog.
They accept occasionally stepping in shit, (sometimes) cleaning up their dog’s shit, going for walks, paying more taxes, etc., again, assumably because they are ‘good’ with the trade-off.
Zero sum gain gaming is breaking the rules and earning stolen benefits from the rest of the people who don’t cheat!
That’s what it is, ‘cheating’.
One of the problems is, if everyone does it, then there are no benefits to be derived from it, just an incremental loss of overall benefits to everybody, a systemic lowering of quality of life to all, which like many, many human endeavours, results in an environmental degradation, which, in and of itself, is negative sum gain gaming.

No I love dogs, they never negative sum gain game me.

Get Over the Political Left to Right Divide

3 Sep

Get Over the Political Left to Right Divide        2017 September 3rd

It is definitely time to leave the old political characterizations of “Left” and “Right” behind.

While one must be careful endorsing any large organizational entities, Wiki has an entry forLeft-Right political spectrum“.

While there may (?!) have been usefulness of this kind of binary differentiation in political discussions, these days, all it does is artificially fosters divisions within the 99%, further enabling the 0.1% to retain control above the inane din below.

If you were to boil down the actual differences between these supposed ideologies, you might find, as I did, that ‘the left’ purports to in inherent, intrinsic level of responsibility, while ‘the right’  seems to support an attitude that if you paid for it, your responsibility is complete.  Of course this is great simplification of the supposed spectrum (you could just as easily read ‘rectum‘), try it out for a while, and see what you think.

The only real true divide in society is the top 0.1%-1% and the 99%, and this, of course, is in and of itself, a spectrum.  But there is a significant difference between competing factions in the top 0.1% and everybody else, their defacto ‘jobs’ are maintaining the status quo for wealth/power divisions, in which they reign, versus the 99%, who are trying to make the most of what (little) they get.

The artificial political divide maintained for the elite 0.1%, by their top 0.9% toadies is wearing thin after Charlottesville, and the Hillary Clinton Democratic National Committee cheat to win the Democrat nomination, then having been exposed by a leak, creating a full onslaught of fake Russia involvement news.

So the two groups are: a. those that work towards maintaining their unreasonable control of power and wealth, and b. those that would like for a more equitable distribution of power and wealth, which needless to say, would comparatively favour them.  There is a group c. the bottom 9/10ths of the top 1% (approximately) who vary across a range of i. being grateful for their existing level of wealth power, in the service of their masters in the top 0.1%, and willing to do whatever it takes to not slip into the bottom 99%, and ii. desiring to be in the top 0.1% and willing to do whatever it takes to get there.



If you are in the 99%, better to let go of the left v. right divide and focus on addressing the dysfunctional distribution of wealth/power.   The other differences between people in the 99% are less relevant until a better distribution of wealth/power is achieved.