Episode-2853- Topic Round Table for 4-8-21 — 9 Comments

  1. Quickie on supplements and timing: IIRC you take some of your vitamin C at night. Vit-C, and many other’s can mess with sleep. Folks taking any supps at night should investigate potential impact on sleep. I know 1G of Vit-C at night was messing with me, YMMV of course.

    PS, I track my sleep with an Oura ring, so have actual data on how it affected me. It was pretty evident based on how I thought I was sleeping but having it backed by data sealed the deal for me.

  2. Thanks for covering my question. I was kind of on the fence when I first heard Vin push the Dim Age prediction more than a year back, but so far the trends are moving in that direction. Supporting that prediction was something I heard from Pippa Malmgren, namely that the scope of human knowledge & technology is growing so fast (the ‘Knowledge Doubling Curve’) that people are getting increasingly overwhelmed, and as a result she predicts we’ll see people relying more on narrative, trust, and feelings instead of numbers & facts. As an aside, she also says that multisensory storytelling will be the critical skill set of the future for tech leaders.

    Anyway, when I see these two smart people from different fields, ages, and backgrounds come to the same conclusion from different directions (and completely independent of each other), it gets my attention. The only thing I haven’t bought into entirely is how long this trend will last. Maybe Vin’s right and this is part of a recurring cycle that’ll last many generations, or maybe something new will come into the scene to change the trend earlier (personal AI assistants to manage the info flow?).

    I agree with your analogy of the foundation of clay. The news media seems to get around this by memory-holing inconvenient facts & stories and just building countless new stories out of clay, counting on the steady deluge of new input and the average person’s short attention span to carry them through (and sadly it usually works). The example you gave of how you think LBRY SHOULD have framed their public response is the kind of thing I had in mind when talking of ‘wrapping’ the facts and logical argument with compelling ideas & narratives… a solid core or foundation with an outer layer of narrative & storytelling. I’d like to think this would be the ‘light side’ of persuasion, compared to the ‘dark side’ so commonly used by the MSM.

  3. As a US citizen it’s important to realize where a 2nd citizenship helps and where it doesn’t. If you’re looking to save on taxes, that will pretty much require giving up your US citizenship… getting a 2nd passport alone won’t cut it. Same with most overseas business concerns and banking; it’s your US citizenship that’s the problem, and having all the other passports in the world usually won’t make a difference until you give up that US citizenship. You could try hiding it I suppose, but the ramifications of getting discovered probably make it a bad move more often than not.

    But let’s say you want to keep your US citizenship… a 2nd passport may make sense if you: 1) live or spend lots of time abroad and want a hedge against the US gov’t taking away your ability to travel (like they did with Snowden), 2) want the guaranteed ability to reside in certain countries, and 3) want easier & cheaper access to visit certain countries. It MIGHT help some with setting up certain overseas trusts and such to protect assets from seizure, though I don’t think a citizenship in that country is usually necessary for that (though it might make it easier).

    The Citizenship-By-Investment programs have been something I’ve been seriously considering lately (and some of them do have family packages that save a lot of money over applying for each family members individually). Personally I don’t intend to give up my US citizenship; yeah taxes suck, but I want to keep the ability to visit or reside in the US. Basically I want it more or less as insurance. And given the steady trend of tyrannical mandates and international pressure, it is insurance that is likely to get much more expensive and difficult to obtain in later years. I wouldn’t rank a 2nd passport above owning one’s own 1st home, but I’d certainly rank it far above getting a vacation home, a pair of high-end luxury cars, or big fishing boat. Especially for me… a big fishing boat in land-locked Mongolia is only slightly more useful than a condom machine in the Vatican… 😉

    • Um that is a big ass it depends. If you are talking personal income you are spot on, if you are talking corporate income totally different.

      So say I get Costa Rican citizenship. Then I form a SA (same as an inc in the US). Sure any salary or dividends I distribute to myself to a degree is subject to US taxation. However the SA’s income and assets are not, at all, even a tiny bit. So my SA can own a house, I can live in it. The SA can hodl crypto and I can borrow against it, it is not income. There are like 1,000 plus loop holes you can exploit.

      People who come at this as employment income have one option only. A CR citizen with a CR SA or for that matter any company not HQd in the US have so so so many options.

      Also if I did become a CR citizen I would likely renounce anyway. US citizenship used to be the most valuable in the world, today sadly it has largely become a liability. We pat our backs about all the poor that want to come here, but the rich come here at will and have no desire to become a citizen.

      • Very true, I was focused on self-employment or solely-owned LLC’s. However, one can usually form a foreign corporation in other countries (depending on the country) without needing a 2nd citizenship in said country, right? So that seems more a pure tax mitigation strategy rather than one relating to reasons for getting a 2nd citizenship. Or, “it’s the same, but different, man…” 🙂

        One thing I discovered is that if I form a foreign corporation here it will have a metric shit-ton of reporting requirements and IRS scrutiny as a “controlled foreign corporation”, and there are some circumstances (subpart F?) where passive income could be taxable even if not distributed. It’s complicated and looks to be the kind of thing you’d want the Michael Jordan of tax lawyers overseeing/advising on all the details. I wouldn’t blame you or anyone else for saying “F*** that noise” and relinquishing US citizenship to make things simpler. Can’t say for sure I won’t eventually have good reason to do the same.

        One thing to note about visiting the US after relinquishing citizenship… we discovered the US Dept of State can be total dicks about approving a US visitor’s visa in this case. We have an extended family member who relinquished US citizenship in order to be involved in political office here, and they’ve refused a US tourist visa to them twice since then. They cited “insufficient evidence that you don’t intend to stay in the US permanently”, even though said person showed evidence of a good job, family here, owned property, and happened to have paid THOUSANDS of dollars simply to give up US citizenship a few years before. That’s hardly the profile of someone looking to stay in the US permanently. No logic apparently involved, just a petty bureaucrat throwing weight around out of some narrow jingo-istic world view. I hope this is more the exception than the rule, but it’s worth considering…

  4. Re: segment on the “Dim Age.”

    Jack, you inadvertently summed up Aristotle’s thoughts on dialectic VS rhetoric.

    You’re right, it’s a very old problem. Aristotle noted that some people could not be persuaded by dialectic (logic, reason, facts) alone and required rhetoric (understanding the emotions and character of the audience and using that) to change their minds.

    I believe, generally, it runs closely along political lines with right leaning people more persuaded by dialectic and left leaning people more persuaded by rhetoric.

    The most persuasive messages contain both. Trump is a great example of this in the modern age. He makes statements designed to stir the emotions of the audience, but still grounded in truth. (ie “fake news” and “crooked Hillary”)

    Anyway, I thought it was cool that you came close to the ideas of one of history’s greatest thinkers, without even knowing it.

    • I remember a number of times where Jack has covered the Trivium, which includes rhetoric along with logic and grammar… so it might not be all that inadvertent given it’s familiar ground he’s covered before.

      It occurred to me the day after sending my question that what I was REALLY asking was how we can best tailor the rhetoric we use in the Dim Age. Hopefully society as a whole won’t be abandoning logic and facts entirely, but if this trend holds true we will need to focus a lot more on increasing and improving the rhetoric we use.

      That, or live far away from most other people. Me? I’m aiming for BOTH. 😉