Blog: TTTThis

If I could pick one thing for people this year, it'd be for them to learn how to make up with friends

It's New Years Day 2021.

If I could teach people one thing this year it'd be how to make up with friends or relations after they have a falling out or a bump in the road.

How to do it is so simple. You have to summon a bit of courage and go up to them and say you're sorry and that the thing you did was stupid or wrong or a mistake, show them you don't want harm to come to them, and sometimes do something nice for them to make up for the harmful thing you did, like give them a gift you know they'd value or make a scene to show them you care about them. This way of doing things is shown in every kids drama TV show, yet no one seems to do it.

But what happens in life is that the person who did the harmful or stupid thing feels bad and doesn't want to face their friend or relation afterwards. Part of this might be the feel bad for the harm the other person felt, part might be they don't want to face a conversation where they have to admit they did harm to a friend, and part might be they don't want to think about themselves in the light that facts would force them to, that all the posts they repost on Facebook every day about how they can't trust anyone or friends are all selfish and that's why everything's impossible describes them, too. It does at least if you don't make amends after you make a mistake.

Over the years I've lost endless friends this way. What usually happens follows a basic pattern. We become friends, we go along and really get along, we treat each other with generosity, usually I'm more generous and look out for their interests more, which is my own problem I need to work on since the results of treating anyone well or considerately seem to indicate that's almost certainly a negative strategy, we become better and better friends and have good times and get closer and closer with the things we talk about and be open about, and then they do something selfish or petty that they feel bad about and then avoid me from then on. I guess because they don't want to face themselves or me. It does take a bit of mustering up a bit of courage to make amends and tell the other person you're sorry and regret something, but there's no way to carry on forward without doing that. Over the years I've lost friends continuously in this way so it's become an obvious pattern. I expect it and see it developing. Usually the day they say, 'You're a real friend,' or something along those lines is the day before it happens, and when I hear start to say something like this I try to cut them off and when I hear it I hear 'This friendship is going to end soon.'

It's tiring and saddening losing friends almost every time you meet them because they just do something wrong and then avoid you. And I see them breaking off their friendships with eachother continuously too. I see one of a pair of inseparable best friends and ask what happened and they had a fight, or the other person did something shitty or stole something, some small and petty thing usually or sometimes something bigger. But the next friend they make has the same thing coming to them because without a way to resolve problems, and since we're going to continuously make mistakes even with important people until we die, it's just going to be a series of starts that have a failed end built into them.


LG Nexus5 running Ubuntu Touch

This is Nexus5, not 5x which is a little different.

In your Nexus5, go to Settings and tap ____ seven times to unlock developer. Also turn on ______. Now you need more than just your phone.

First Download UBPorts (Linux or I think Windows)

(Keep reading this paragraph) Second, download Android SDK Tools to use to unlock the OEM bootloader on the phone. THis is at, and you scroll down to Command Line Tools Only: stkmanager. There's a Linux option as well there. THAT didn't work, since they don't seem to make available the SDK Tools, just the full version and a few other things. Intsead, go to for toolkit-wugs-nexus-root-toolkit where he has a link to the Nexus Root Toolkit, and download that.

Open that program and plug the Nexus 5 into the computer with USB. When you plug it in you'll see a message on the phone saying 'allow?' and you want to check 'always allow' and then click OK. Now with the program, you can 'Unlock' the bootloader. Then the phone will reboot itself as part of this same process executed by the Wugs program.

I didn't bother to 'root' the phone, but went and did UBPorts next. It didn't detect it was a Nexus 5 so I picked it manually.


A YouTube video you can follow:


Pershing Square's 2020

Bill Ackman's now managing $17b, after making 70% returns this year and 60% the year before, with his Pershing Square hedge fund. These two years, though, follow several years of losses. This shows, perhaps, how different investors with their own investing style perform differently in different market conditions.

In March, investors who are very risk-taking, of who foresaw somehow the certain quick recovery, would have performed the best. Going all in after the first week of the crisis in March would have shown the best results, particularly if you went into things like gold and mineral mining companies, vehicle companies like Ford, etc., which have all gone up hundreds of percent since then. Meanwhile, traditional investors like Warren Buffet performed really poorly in the crisis. Perhaps he didn't expect the Fed to do so much stimulus which many credit as doing almost all the lifting of the economy up until November or December when word of vaccine trial conclusions hit the press. But why didn't he? Doesn't he have access to this kind of information? Couldn't his giant investment company get basic forecast information and do the math?

Ackman didn't make his money on being wise after the pandemic, though. He made $2.6b off a single move. A low-downside-risk $26m hedge in the credit default swap index markets. Basically, he made a bet credit spreads, which were at an all time tightest levels ever, would widen going into what he saw to be a serious economic crisis. This would be caused when people would panic and sell and drive prices lower when pandemic news really hit. Notably, he did a voice call with CNBC where he sounded paniced and talked about how everything could go to zero.

His usual style is publicly pressuring management to make changes, an activist style, it is said. He made good returns off doing something like this with Canada's largest railway company a couple years ago, I think.

He's now one of the most talked-about investors of the year, along with Kathy Woods who's also had a good track record, I think largely because of her bet on Tesla a few years ago. I'd put money with him, going forward, I think only if I though he was going to do more highjinx like the panic-call short sell which made him so much.

Ackman interview on it at the end of 2020:


Anthropology in neighborhoods with Nextdoor app

It's an app that works kind of like Facebook, but for realworld community members to post about and to other members. The mods are often the first person in a given community to join, and they have undemocratic power to ban members. It's turned into a big of an issue since people's biases and fears are amplified and given power through the app. People reporting suspicious people on the streets, threatening other members to report them to their employers, etc., in addition to the benefits of posting if someone has fresh fruit to give away. There are a few other apps that are also becoming highly used that do similar things, and Facebook is looking at doing a Neighborhoods feature. Another example of why I doubt I would ever want to live in the future world, even a decade or two ahead. The third and second world where I live might last a little longer, maybe not. The next step is a deserted island, but with the new internet satellites that are planned to deliver service to the entire world, plus solar power so you don't need a power source, plus the ever-sharper eyes in the sky, even deserted islands won't be a refuge from the shitworld. Maybe the best locations will be the worst, like Haiti, where the culture is so violent and untrustworthy that they can never build anything, where although you might live a shitty life there at least it will be relatively and acceptably free. The app is currently privately valued at $2b, and might IPO soon a a $5b $6b valuation. Users are growing.

Every piece of technology that empowers causes problems because it empowers. People in general are not prepared to use power responsibly because they're too mentally limited and mostly don't have the energy or will to control their more destructive tendencies. That's why we see every tool that gives them power cause social problems more than benefits.

Another reason is that in the first world there is so little real problems to fix in terms of problems caused by people. Crime has been declining for decades. It's declined for the past 10 years also, although perception of crime has risen for 10 years, thanks I guess to social media and journalism. It has been declining despite the creation of new and senseless laws making more unharmful things crimes, and more tools empowering the State to impose its laws. Perhaps a large part is that people in the West have nothing to do, and are denied many of the things they could enjoy or pursue in their own lives, so try to nose into or cause problems or 'solve' other people. Part of that no doubt is simply the lazy, nosy nature of people, as we see it in tribes as much as in suburbs.

I sometimes think of something said by that British spy novel writer, who had himself been a low-level spy in the years after WWII, that more spy tools or more ability to collect information was useless, because it didn't find the important parts that were needed. What was required was a very skilled person to know what he needed to find, or the specific-ish things that were valuable, go in to a specific location and get those things, and then they could use them. When they instead had access to more and more spying and tools, it just created useless, unusable mass, to which their labor now had to turn to to work on and try to sort or make sense of, taking them away from doing something targeted and specific to reach valuable specific goals. This is the same thing we have at the public State level now, with their rationales of protecting people from terrorism and other super-rare crimes, as well as some made-up crimes. They collect all data on everyone all the time, and store it all in giant buildings. They completely do more wrong and harm than they possibly could to benefit. But they could never use this information responsibly because it's not targeted and sensibly and responsibly collected and employed. It's just mass. Again, part of it is there isn't much real crime for them to find. Even their main target, terrorism, they can't prevent often as long as the terrorists are the least bit savvy or even if their not. The same thing at the neighborhood level, where people don't have anything really of value to do in terms of watching their neighbors. Any real harm would be so rare. Instead they just create and make up problems so they can find them.

In the Napoleonic wars in Spain of those discounted some soldiers were killed, many more were wounded, and others were deserters. In the battles, they seized the moment they weren't under supervision of their superiors to go in groups of 10 or 15 or 20, all armed and all hungry, down the hill they were fighting on to the village at the bottom of the hill, and ask who the French supporter was, and find out who was the person in the village with the most money, and the French supporter they produced was the most rich person in town, and that's exactly who they killed and took his things.

Today in those same towns we have something just like this banditry, terrorism, whether it be Basques or IS. Who wouldn't join such a group if they thought it was the best way to take things they wanted and didn't see themselves getting otherwise? And at a larger, more convoluted level, communities can be fonts of the same guerrilismo.


US is blacklisting more Chinese companies

I don't invest in any Chinese companies, so I don't care much, but it's interesting that no one is really framing this in terms of the fact China and it's companies aren't doing anything new that is considered bad. Closer to the truth is that the US has been bad in allowing China to do these things, dating to Kissinger I guess.