No Image

Centralized Control, Power, & Money Are The Problem, Not The Solution

Submitted by Charles Hugh-Smith via OfTwoMinds blog,

Solutions abound, but they look forward, not backward.

Many observers decry the loss of national coherence and purpose, and the increasing fragmentation of the populace into “tribes” with their own loyalties, value systems and priorities.

These observers look back on the national unity of World War II as the ideal social standard: everyone pitching in, with shared purpose and sacrifice. (Never mind the war killed tens of millions of people, including over 400,000 Americans.)

But few (if any) of these nostalgic observers note that history has no rewind button or reverse gear. It is impossible to recreate the national unity of World War II, as modern war is either specialized or nuclear. Neither enable mass mobilization.

Few observers note that World War II set the template for the next 60 years: the solution is always to further centralize power, control and money to serve the goals set by centralized authority.

The wartime economies of every combatant were optimized not just for production of war goods but for centralized command and control of that production.

We are now so habituated to centralized decision-making, control and power that we don’t even question the notion that a wildly diverse nation of 320 million people can be well-served by a single healthcare system that requires thousands of pages of regulations to function in a centrally managed fashion.

It seems blindingly obvious to me that we need 10,000 different solutions to healthcare, not one insanely complex centralized system that is a global outlier in its cost and ineffectiveness (see chart below).

Those who are nostalgic for a centralized command and control economy and society are like those who decried the breakdown of “the one faith” Catholicism in the emergence of Protestant Christians.

The Protestant Reformation occurred because the centralized authority of Rome no longer worked for many of the faithful. The proliferation of Protestant churches was the solution.

Simply put, the 4th Industrial Revolution has de-optimized centralization. Centralized control, power and money are now the problem, not the solution.

Source: U.S. Healthcare Is A Global Outlier

This reality has pitted the changes in the economy and technology against the political command and control system that is virtually unchanged since 1945. New layers of bureaucracy are added, but none are ever dissolved.

Those decrying the loss of centralized control and narratives are in essence decrying solutions to the new problems we face. Just as the Catholic Church could not turn back the clock to 500 A.D., so the central states and banks cannot turn back the clock to 1945.

Solutions abound, but they look forward, not backward, and they embrace experimentation, innovation, decentralization, community and new models that obsolete de-optimized centralization. These solutions are what Of Two Minds is all about.

The post Centralized Control, Power, & Money Are The Problem, Not The Solution appeared first on

No Image

Saudi Cabinet: Syrian regime committed ‘war crimes’

The Saudi Cabinet claimed yesterday that the massacres committed in Aleppo constituted “a war crime against humanity”. The cabinet, which is chaired by King Salman, renewed the kingdom’s position, taken at the emergency meeting of the executive committee of foreign ministers of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), which concluded that the massacres committed in Aleppo are “a war crime against humanity”. The cabinet also welcomed UN Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2328 on the deployment of international observers in Aleppo to supervise the evacuation of civilians. According to Arab News, the cabinet expressed the kingdom’s support for the Syrian people in the face of genocide by the Syrian regime throughout the country. During the session at Al-Yamamah Palace in Riyadh […]

No Image

Mexico Economy Minister says talked to Head of Ford Mexico, and Made Clear to Him Company Will Hold to Existing Commitments


The post Mexico Economy Minister says talked to Head of Ford Mexico, and Made Clear to Him Company Will Hold to Existing Commitments appeared first on

No Image

Delek US, Alon USA to merge

Delek US Holdings Inc., Brentwood, Tenn., has entered a definitive agreement to buy all outstanding shares of Alon Israel Oil Co. Ltd.’s US-based refining and marketing subsidiary Alon USA Energy Inc., Dallas, which owns and operates a 74,000-b/sd refinery in Krotz Springs, La.; an idled 70,000-b/sd, three-refinery complex in California; and through its majority interest in Alon USA Partners LP, a 73,000 b/sd refinery at Big Spring, Tex.

No Image

Fire in historic Chilean city ‘practically’ controlled

Agence France Presse
Tue, 2017-01-03

SANTIAGO: A large fire that burned 150 homes in the historic port city of Valparaiso, Chile has been “practically” brought under control, an official said Tuesday.
Monday’s fire forced dozens of residents to take refuge in shelters and devoured green hillsides in the Laguna Verde neighborhood, on the southern outskirts of the colonial city.
“It is practically controlled. We just have to finish off the fire. Once that’s done, we’ll start clearing the debris and begin rebuilding,” said Mayor Gabriel Aldoney.
But authorities have warned the weather could complicate matters. High temperatures and strong winds were forecast for Tuesday afternoon in Valparaiso, where it is mid-summer.
Hundreds of firefighters were dispatched to battle the blaze Monday, along with water-dumping airplanes and helicopters.
The cause of the blaze was not known.
The fire left 19 people hurt, most suffering from smoke inhalation.
Nearly 150 people have sought refuge in emergency shelters.
Valparaiso’s many hills, narrow streets and wooden houses make it vulnerable to fires.
Last March, a fire killed one person and destroyed 600 hectares (1,500 acres) of woods around the city.
And in 2014, wildfires killed 15 people and destroyed some 3,000 houses.
Located 120 kilometers (75 miles) northwest of the capital Santiago, Valparaiso is the seat of the Chilean Congress and a Unesco World Heritage Site.
Dubbed the “jewel of the Pacific,” it spans 40 hills, offering stunning views of the sea.
Thousands of tourists stroll its narrow cobblestone streets and ride cable cars up the steep hills each year.
The city was a famous port of call in its heyday, from the mid-19th century to the early 20th.
But the opening of the Panama Canal in 1914 brought its glory days to an abrupt end.
Today, it relies heavily on tourism, and living standards are lower than the average in Chile.

Main category: