Rather interesting article from the FT on Russia's recent successes in VAT collection, which is soaring thanks to digitization and AI. How was this done? Basically, hiring IT nerds and giving them authority. I wrote about a seemingly similar reshuffle at Rosstat earlier this year, in which an ageing Soviet-era economist was replaced with a... Read More
Now here's the problem: Carbon taxes are extremely regressive. Furthermore, they hit hardest precisely those groups - the rural and small town blue-collars of the US - who have been hit hardest by economic globalization, which massively benefited the transnational oligarchy and the developing world but left the Fishtowns behind in a haze of deindustrialization... Read More
A year ago I predicted that there will be a "decoupling from the unwinding", as "emerging markets" by and large ride out the temporary shocks of declining Western demand for their exports (China) and the interruption of Western credit intermediation (Russia) before resuming growth. This is one aspect of the trends leading to the imminent... Read More
One of the most interesting emerging sciences today, in my opinion, is cliodynamics. Their practitioners attempt to come to with mathematical models of history to explain "big history" - things like the rise of empires, social discontent, civil wars, and state collapse. To the casual observer history may appear to be chaotic and fathomless, devoid... Read More
The classic Marxist argument holds than an emerging bourgeois class, its wealth based on commerce, industry and capital accumulation, was constrained and frustrated in its political ambitions by the nobility. France was divided into Three Estates, the Third Estate which bore the taille (the main direct tax), the nobility (subject only to the capitation poll... Read More
I am a blogger, thinker, and businessman in the SF Bay Area. I’m originally from Russia, spent many years in Britain, and studied at U.C. Berkeley.
One of my tenets is that ideologies tend to suck. As such, I hesitate about attaching labels to myself. That said, if it’s really necessary, I suppose “liberal-conservative neoreactionary” would be close enough.
Though I consider myself part of the Orthodox Church, my philosophy and spiritual views are more influenced by digital physics, Gnosticism, and Russian cosmism than anything specifically Judeo-Christian.