Open Thread

Open Thread #259

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48 thoughts on “Open Thread #259

  1. I’m feeling really good today. I had thought I lost a bit of money in crypto as I had ben late to the party. I just took my entire stash of 4 bitcoin and doubled my monies!!!

    Here’s the website:

    It is hosted by the degenerate rock band metallica. They must have gotten a lot of money from Nabster to afford to double everyone’s monies!!!

    [Admin note: In case it is not obvious, this is a scam website. P Ray is only joking.]

  2. Is Kanye a net positive or a net negative? On the one hand it’s good to point out disproportionate (and often malevolent) Jewish power. On the other hand Kanye looks like a clown so he might scare away newcomers with his ridiculous antics.

    I’m Jewish myself so I know there are good Jews and I’m not coming from a place of hate; but I do think the Jewish community deserves criticism for its behavior at this point in time.

    Part of me thinks Kanye is some kind of op to discredit that opposition by attaching it to buffoonery and inceldom (Fuentes).

    1. I just saw the Alex Jones show featuring Kanye. He dresses and talks like an insane person. He’s comes across like a flat earther and no normie is going to watch that and think that the far-right suddenly has a good point.

    2. Ye did not have good optics at all. Someone turned this into a meme, juxtaposing Kanye and Jordan Peterson, in a suit, with the caption, “Who has greater mainstream appeal?”. On a related note, Alex Jones was ordered to pay $1.5 billion for his Sandy Hook denial. We really live in clown world.

    3. That dumb black kayne west is being used to make us sophisticated antisemites look bad , these jews are always one step ahead damm it! , nice username btw but you will have to change it once we are in power again, maybe for ” undercover jew”.

    4. David questioned my sincerity and hinted at the possibility that I would have to go into hiding in the fourth reich.

      My response was justified. While I understand people are justifiably angry at Jews I’m not going to take kindly to people going after me personally.

    5. You should reflect on your last two comments. It might teach you something about the Jewish psyche.

    6. I don’t see anything wrong with either comment. Can you explain what you find so objectionable about them?

  3. Listening to a The Economist podcast on how the UK is turning into one of the highest net emigrant country in Europe for professionals and skilled tradespeople primarily to Australia and Canada.

    Aaron, I’ve met a young German (from NRW, not Berlin) working on his Ph.D. in the life sciences who told me that his dream is to move to Switzerland, due to the robust biotech sector there. In fact, Switzerland has strong banking and tech sectors as well with much higher salaries compared to Germany.

    As Berlin and Germany get overwhelmed with Third World immigration, do you see “white flight” occuring to other DACH countries (including Lichtenstein and Luxembourg) that are more protective of their borders and have stronger financial health?

    1. Moving countries is a step not many people take lightly. Besides, there are only so many people who can realistically move to Lichtenstein or Lucembourg before this becomes a problem for those countries. Third-world migration is always welcome, but whites, let alone Germans, wanting to move to another country with a related culture is a sacrilege.

      There have long been robust numbers of German graduates with a STEM background — with the recent slump in tech hiring, politicians don’t seem to use this acronym much anymore — moving to Scandinavia for medicine or to Switzerland for many other fields, but they commonly return after a few years. I think that we will first see stronger internal migration within Germany. This effect is already noticeable in Berlin. Families with children leave, often to surrounding Brandenburg or even to the south of Germany. I think that more hard-working and law-abiding people are going to abandon the big cities. Parts of Berlin are already unsafe at night. Give it a few more years, and people will wonder how the movie Escape from New York managed to be this prophetic.

  4. I get the impression that countries such as Norway and Switzerland that have saved themselves a lot of the headache that submitting to the demand of Brussels would carry and would be more capitalistic, unless cultural factors such as provincialism would preclude fellow Scandinavians or Germans/French/Italians from fully integrating socially into communities in Norway and Switzerland, respectively?

    In the case that large cities such as Berlin and Paris are in decline (from what I could tell when visiting in 2019) in favor of more agile and economically dynamic smaller cities (e.g. Amsterdam) or the European equivalent of “suburbs” such as Potsdam and Versailles or more prosperous states (e.g. Bavaria) within the larger country, what would Minimal Game 2.0 or Club Game 2.0 resemble? Would community ties, alumni networks, recreational activities play a greater role in courtship? Would it be more professional status driven or physical attraction driven all the same?

    1. Racking up large numbers and, in particular, quick hook-ups only depend on the veil of anonymity. Women can easily be sluts in NYC, London, or Berlin, but their options are severely constrained in smaller cities. Of course, there is some leeway. A woman who goes to a local university and lives at home will hardly have the ability of slutting it up like class mates of hers who live in dormitories. A while ago I had a conversation with someone living in a continental city of about 500k people before moving to Berlin. I did not bring up the topic himself, but he added that women behave in ways that in his hometown just would not have been possible because they would quickly ruin their reputation. This is under the assumption that those women want to eventually marry and settle down. I mention this because this was a regular guy who just goes out every once in a while but he is not some kind of player. Yet, even for him this difference in female behavior was blatantly obvious.

      In case greater internal migration happens in the more affluent Western countries, we will see larger communities emerge with people trying to retain their culture and a revival of local traditions. So far, I only have anecdotal evidence but according to my trips to the countryside this and last year, there is much greater interest in traditional customs than there was when I grew up. There is also a surprising interest in houses for rent. There is a great desire to escape city hellscapes, in particular once children are on the way. Obviously, you are not going to have quick bathroom pulls in such an environment, and women would also be a lot more careful about whom to spread their legs for.

  5. So…I finally decided to take up Meditation again. The primary reason being is that it helps a ton with being able to lucid dream consistently. (which I decided to start doing again) and I guess you could also say I’m on “self-improvement” as they say,been following a lifting program consistently for a bit and decided to just go ahead and tack this on as well.

    The Meditation I did decide to do is the typical one taught however,which is focusing on and counting your breaths. (start at 8:40 for the description of the simple Meditation)

    Now,why am I talking about this? Its because I noticed…This is a whole lot easier than the kind of Meditation you teach,Aaron. I’ve looked through my journals in the past and it seems I followed your Meditation for almost 2 months but ended up stopping due to college and life troubles. (which thankfully are no longer factors in my current life)

    That was years ago…but I’m getting the feeling it still paid off even as of now. Because when I did this meditation,it was no trouble for me to keep my focus and keep counting till the timer rang. I got to around 48 counts at 5 minutes,and around 80-90 counts at 10 minutes.

    Point was…this wasn’t overly difficult for me at all. Apparently total newbies end up getting distracted and losing count entirely before the timer. I guess this is a similar phenomenon to “Muscle memory”,where if you’ve consistently lifted and built muscle in the past,you’ll easily regain it if you had to stop and came back to the gym at a later time. My previous experience (albeit limited) having done your method of Meditation allowed me to quickly adjust to this with more ease than I expected.

    I think I’ll keep doing this Meditation for a little bit,maybe increase this till 30 minutes (I have only tried this once with your Meditation back then),and then switch back to your Meditation method of Meditation,Aaron. I fully get why you consider focusing on the breath to be training wheels in comparison to what you teach. It actually is easier to keep the mind clear by focusing on the breath.

    1. Of course,this could also partly be the result of the lifting program I’ve been following. Franky,when I’m lifting hard and progressively overloading,daydreaming is the absolute last thing on my mind even when I’m resting for the next set. I’m definitely completely “in the moment” during that time,haha.

      I guess weight training can actually count among the “physical activities that can synergize with meditation practice” that I spoke with you about before.

    2. This observation is correct. When lifting something heavy, you will not even be able to think of some b.s. Thus, I would not be surprised if lifting was better at curing depression than anything else, but good luck getting such a study approved! Swimming, running, cycling, rowing, and other endurance sports have a similar effect but unlike with heavy lifting, it can take longer to slip into a meditative state.

    3. @Aaron, speaking of which, I myself resumed meditating after a long hiatus recently.

      Question: I can keep my mind pretty clear for 5 minutes. For 10-15 minute sessions, I find myself getting lost in thought a decent bit.

      Does that mean I should only be meditating for 5 minutes until, and periodically take shots at 10 minutes? Then once I keep my mind pretty clear for 10 minutes, make that my new session length?

    4. Both approaches work, but I recommend getting out of your comfort zone. If you are fine with sitting in the lotus position for ten minutes then just make ten minutes your new default, and if you notice, after a week or so, that there is no progress, reduce your time to five or seven minutes.

    5. I see. I’ve actually been sitting in a chair. My knees can’t handle the lotus position.

    6. Something I want to add…This counting Meditation gets quite a bit harder if you try to do it while laying down. I often lose myself in hypnagogia by the count of around 20 seconds. (I did this after waking up in the middle of the night as per the instructions of the lucid dream course I’m following.)

      Of course,I believe you already recommended against trying to Meditate while laying down in bed because its just way too easy to fall asleep. I mention this because I think I’ve just potentially found a quick fix if anyone here is having trouble falling asleep.

      I imagine it would not be a good idea to mix your Meditation style here because it might build a bad habit (You don’t Meditate with the ultimate goal of falling asleep),but I think this counting Meditation specifically may be a good sleep aid. “Focusing on the breath” Meditation might be good specifically for this.

      I’ll speak on this again once I get more experience,these are just my current observations.

  6. Aaron, I’m sure the people with families and children that move to the suburbs and countryside most likely met in the big city. That’s the consistent pattern I’ve seen in small town America. Otherwise, whoever was lucky to have a highschool sweetheart or family connections to marry. Lately, there’s been a trend of younger people living and working in large college towns (e.g. Austin, TX) where they can still maintain their social lives after graduating as employers have moved there. However, as an outsider moving in to do the same without the university connection will struggle unless part of a large corporate network to substitute.

    What I’m trying to say is that small towns are equally crippling in their limited dating pools as there are still large numbers of MGTOWs and cat ladies still there. In fact, due to their isolation you find more of those bizarre poorly dressed women that you advised to avoid in “Club Game” (as well as Mama’s boys and black-pilled men). Rather, medium-sized cities (e.g. Boston, DC) seem to offer a healthy and balanced social environment conducive to dating. Have you seen similar trends in Europe? I’ve heard that some medium-sized German cities such as Cologne or Bonn or Munich with their large university and corporate presence are better places for dating than Berlin.

    With the movement of professionals out of big cities in the small towns and suburbs, do you see pickup as evolving more in the direction of that of Good Looking Loser who is based in Los Angeles, where due to the decentralized nature of communities necessitates online dating and social circle jockeying? You did discuss how self-crippling social circles are in your books but they may become the norm. The pandemic seems to have killed interaction among strangers in major cities but increased the value of being part of exclusive social circles from college and high school where trust levels are higher but so are barriers to entry for outsiders (except those who look hot online). What do you think?

    1. Surely, a lot of people moving to a small town or city after having worked in a big city have some personal connection. Of course, for the purposes of dating you probably will not have quite the selection in your 5000-people town as you would have in a regional hub. This should be immediately clear.

      Munich is the third-largest city in Germany, and people do not refer to it as “medium-sized”.

      Of course, if we move towards increased segregation, then there will be a bigger community-focus in dating. I spoke of my experience of social circles being crippling because that was at a time before smartphones revolutionized how people communicate. Only after the iPhone had reached large market penetration, with other manufacturers copying many features, did online dating really take off. Before that, this was a niche activity.

  7. @Pickernanny
    I recently had another look at Electric Underground on YT. Check out these videos on shmups, if you want to further explore the genre:

    1) Top 30 Shmups of All-Time:
    Of course, this is a highly subjective list, but it gives you a good overview of the breadth of the genre.

    2) Gameplay density:
    This is an interesting discussion on why well designed shmups and other gameplay-centric games are more engaging. You may not find this video particularly revelatory as you probably have formed similar beliefs through playing retrogames, but it is a good analysis nonetheless, and the concept he defines is plausible. This could indeed be a metric for assessing a game’s quality.

    3) Crimzon Clover review: (Switch release) (Addendum on Steam release)
    This game is probably the best entry-point in the genre as it is easily available and has a lot of modes, catering to players of all experience levels. On top, this is a very well-made shmup that is simply a blast to play.

    1. Hell yea, thanks for the list of recommendations! Am I correct in thinking that Crimzon Clover was created by a shmup master gamer? I’m going to go ahead and wishlist it on Steam and catch it on sale. I have Raiden V and Ikaruga sitting on my Switch. I think I’ll go ahead and see if Raiden V is worth devoting some time to. Have you by chance played this one?

      I think one argument for retro games in general being more engaging is the fact that you actually play them. With those big Sony movie style releases your brain just shuts off whenever you are constantly bombarded by cutscenes. Old RPGs used to make me feel as though I was immersed in a good book at times, whereas modern ones leave nothing to the imagination.

    2. Crimzon Clover was indeed created by one of the best players in this genre, Clover-TAC. He holds world records in several shmups. I think he was also hired for play testing by Cave for several of their games, along with several other top players. This is quite a difference to how Western studios do play testing. They farm out QA to a second or third-world country where people without much interest in games get a few shekels for playing the latest Ubisoft slop who often cannot be bothered to report even egregious problems.

      Ikaruga is a very solid game, but I am a bit divided on Raiden III and above. The original studio disbanded, and the IP got bought up by some other company. I only played Raiden IV on PS3 for a bit but did not like it very much. I thought it was okay but that was about it. Raiden V has a decent reputation in the community and is considered the best of the new-style Raiden games, but I have not played it myself yet. What made you buy it? Ikaruga is a classic and enjoys some name reputation but Raiden is a series that is nowadays only known by people who are more familiar with the shmups genre.

    3. Btw, my gpa’s 80th birthday is coming up. I think it’d be cool to pick him up a few puzzle strategy games and set up that old Gamecube for him I have sitting back at home. There’s one called Puyo Pop Fever that goes for around $30 on ebay plus shipping that I just found.

    4. Does your grandpa still play games? This would be quite a gift for him. Puyo Pop Fever introduces the titular fever mechanic, which he may not enjoy as it simplifies the game too much. After you hit certain criteria, you enter “fever mode”. In this mode, you get a mindlessly simply playfield to clear, for bonus points and extra damage, before the game returns to the standard mode. It may be possible to disable the fever rule in Puyo Pop Fever. Maybe check this out in an emulator first. If this is not possible, then he may enjoy Dr Robotnik’s Mean Bean Machine on a Genesis more but TVs made in the last 15 to 20 years may not even have the required connectors anymore. There is also Puyo Puyo Tetris for the Switch, which has a bizarre story mode that mixes up both games.

    5. I just consulted my buddy. He says Crimzon Clover is one his favorite shooters, and it has a 97% overall positive rating on Steam right now. Apparently, he enjoyed Raiden V as well but recommends turning the dialogue off for that one.

    6. Ask your buddy to sit down and clear Novice mode with the Type-Z ship. This is an incredibly fun game and in Novice, which is not quite as easy as it may sound, it is also an 1cc you can achieve within a reasonable amount of time. The extensive training mode helps, too.

    7. That Capcom presentation is very disheartening. I think now would be a good time for me to just accept that gaming is on life support and move on. It would be a good time to focus on the humongous backlog of amazing games that span the last few decades.

      I picked up Raiden V about 2-3 years ago and I’m almost certain I just happened upon it and Ikaruga on sale and decided to grab them for a rainy day. It was also around right after the time my buddy (that I spoke of) and I had just co-oped a shmup with waifus in it called Caladrius Blaze, so shmups were fresh on my mind.

      I just remembered another game I used to play as a kid called Star Soldier for NES. I mentioned playing Gradius III for the SNES before, and I think that was a good game for me as a kid to get into as a shmup because the frequent frame drops made it kind of easier. I’d love to eventually get a rom of Gradius V working for the PS2 some time. I haven’t actually played it yet, but I remember watching videos of the gameplay and thinking that the backgrounds in that game were top notch.

    8. I did not expect anyone mention Caladrius Blaze outside of shmup community sites. This was probably the last “big budget” shmup release in this genre. Did you get some of the “shame breaks”/”cut-in breaks” that show the shoe-horned in sluts in this game in compromising positions? I once owned a Japanese copy for the PS3, in fact. I did not want to import it but a friend of mine had incidentally planned to travel to Japan, and he picked up a copy for me. Overall, Caladrius Blaze is a very solid shmup. It is from the same company that made Raiden V. Shmups are not normally made for co-op play and oftentimes would make the games too easy as you can cover the entire screen with bullets; similarly, Dark Souls or Monster Hunter games are also a lot easier with additional players. Caladrius Blaze, though, due to its very unusual wide-screen layout with vertical scrolling leaves more than enough space for two players.

      I just recalled that the SNES ROM of Gradius III got a patch to remove all the slowdown, making it a lot more difficult. I did not play this game myself but when I was a kid, I was quite into Axelay and could 1CC it, well before I even knew this term existed. You can probably play Gradius V on an emulator on your Steam Deck quite easily. I also have it on my bucket list. It was not made by Konami but Treasure, by the way, and you already own their most well-known game, i.e. Ikaruga.

    9. My grandpa hasn’t played games in quite a while, probably due to it not being readily available to him anymore. He’s not the type to seek out a console unless there just happened to be one in the house. I still think it would be a cool gift for him, though. He’s not going to actually want any gifts anyway, so there’s nothing to lose. I bet he would fire it up and play some puzzle games if it was set up for him, just like in the old days.

    10. This game would definitely be a cool gift for him. Also, if you have played any puzzle game extensively, the controls are so ingrained that you can very easily pick up a game again, even after years. It’s like riding a bicycle or swimming.

    11. I had to look up the shaming mechanic to refresh my mind. I can’t remember if we pulled them off or not, but I distinctly remember how your character’s clothing becomes more tattered as you deplete more lives. I went ahead and wish listed this game, and my buddy pointed me in the direction of this casual shooter called Waifu Uncovered, where you shoot at aliens on the screen and collect throwing stars to destroy the infected clothing of teenage sluts in the background. There’s an incentive mechanic to keep you playing as the uncensored versions require you progress to a certain extent to unlock them, as well as unlockable ships. It’s was on sale for a $1.50 so I grabbed it and played a couple rounds. It’s pretty humorous.

      I don’t why I haven’t gotten into this genre very much before but I’m definitely starting to see the appeal. I have Axelay for SNES and a few other roms on the raspberri pi. I also found this guy on youtube called Shmup Junkie, I think, who has a review of all 82 megadrive shmups. That video should make tracking down the best ones for that console quite easy.

      Btw, Synthetic Man just dropped his review of TCP. When he talked about the ”stealth” section being ripped straight out if TLOU I lost all interest. I wouldn’t pay $10 for the game considering that you can get DMC5 and Doom 2016 for around or even cheaper than that, and they’re way better. There was one really good point made about the rushed nature of the game, though, considering that they most definitely didn’t want to have to compete with Dead Space and REmake 4.

    12. Waifu Uncovered looks surprisingly good. I know Shmup Junkie via the Electric Underground channel. The two hosts did one or two discussions together. The former is much more into the 8/16-bit style of shmups whereas I find the more modern bullet-hell style more interesting, which got started with Dodonpachi in 1997. It is a pity that these games got virtually no released for home consoles outside of Japan, apart from a small number for the Xbox 360.

      Thanks for the heads up! I just watched this review and was surprised how shockingly bad TCP is. The game mechanics seem laughable. Now I am not sure that I would even pay $10 for it used. Well, the developers got their wish. By releasing such a shoddy game, they do not have to compete with those other two games anymore. The Dead Space remake was probably the bigger problem, which is ironic because a polished version of TCP with good gameplay would likely have done very well against it. The original Dead Space still looks pretty good and it is easily available, so I am not sure why it even gets a remaster.

    13. Right now I have Dodonpachi Resurrection, Caladrius Blaze and Crimzon Clover wish listed. I’m ready to dive into one of these already! As I was playing through WU, I got exactly what you meant when you said these types of games are more engaging. With too many modern games I can grab my phone and check it for messages and maybe miss a few seconds of a cutscene. Those few seconds could get you killed in a shmup, and even the desire to pause to game and break concentration is low because it totally ruins the flow. Hell, I’d have to imagine shmups are perhaps beneficial for concentration, at the very least much less cognitively detrimental than many other games these days.

    14. In the arcade, you cannot pause games at all. If you blink, chances are that you will lose a life. In contrast, in a modern game, you can ignore pausing the game, taking a dump, get back and just continue because your character will just respawn. In the vast majority of modern games, there is no punishment for mistakes at all anymore.

      You are right, playing a well-designed shmup will improve concentration as you need to be fully focussed. Some people have written articles about “getting into the zone” when playing. I imagine that racing games are also very good for this.

  8. Here’s an amusing clip of Jewdan Suckspeterson squirming when confronted with the JQ in a calm and rational way during a live talk. Maybe you’ve seen it, but if not it’s definitely worth checking out as it’s an incredible real time demonstration of “to see who controls you, look to who you aren’t allowed to criticize.” The audience member positing the JQ does so in such a logical manner that JP cannot deny to rationale, and instead comments that he “can’t do it.”

    1. I did not know about this video. Is Peterson crying on stage after this Jewish-American gentleman asked him this well-articulated question? I am not surprised about this reaction at all as I knew about Jordan Benzos Petercuck’s stance on the JQ, thanks to an utterly ridiculous and groveling blog post he wrote many years ago. I commented on it on my other blog. I find it quite interesting that the book the audience member mentions, 200 Years Together, written by Petersons’s idol Solzhenitsyn no less, was never published in the United States, allegedly due to meddling by the Jewish lobby.

    2. Did you happen to catch the segment of the Game Awards where some kid wearing Kanye sneakers jumps in front of the Elden Ring crew to accept the award? He thanks “reformed orthodox rabbi Bill Clinton”, haha. Are we approaching the Overton window, or are we passed it already?

    3. This was probably the highlight of the show. I was quite amused that he just got up, joining the From Software guys as if he is one of them, and on stage he just walks around a little bit. This was also a pretty young guy, which fits my perception that the Zoomer generation is much more based than any other generation alive.

    4. Someone modded Bill Clinton into Elden Ring:
      I would probably prefer playing this game with an anime waifu or a top-notch slut like Cindy Aurum from FF XV, but for some, whacking monsters with our old pal Bill Clinton (may he rot in hell!) is probably a humorous throwback, seeing that he was also in NBA Jam on the SNES.

      For the next few years, modding on PC is probably the best option for gamers, seeing how pozzed the console manufacturers have become. Sony’s exclusives don’t interest me at all anymore, and Microsoft’s never have. Nintendo is, so far, playing by their own rules, thankfully, but they use severely outdated hardware as a strategy, aka. “lateral thinking with withered technology”, as they call it themselves.

    5. “This was also a pretty young guy, which fits my perception that the Zoomer generation is much more based than any other generation alive.”

      I think there is probably a pretty even split, and each side is relatively more “radical”. I mean, there are definitely some very successfully brainwashed zoomers. A lot of LGBT nonsense and white guilt etc. Yet, there are those that rebel and leaning far right is the obvious counter culture. When I was growing through adolescence there was no harkening back to the good ol’ glory days of Mr. Mustache, but this is much more common today with zoomers who feel that their birthrights have been stripped from them.

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