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July 30, 2010


Shlok Vaidya

Yeah! Complex systems yield emergent effects.

9/11 was a mindfuck because everyone was assuming unipolarity post-1991.

In actuality, we saw the unprecedented growth of black globalization, even surpassing legitimate. This compounded. Hit a tipping point.

Of course, the derivatives boom was happening concurrently. The debt boom before that. And we've been watching hydrocarbon problems compound for a century now.

Each has the ability to yield a black swan event.


I want to start a indie rock band called "Black Swan." Heh.

russ greene

Super-empowered individuals might not yet be a reality.

Super-empowered non-state actors, though, are. And you're right, it takes a cumulative effect and the appropriate setting.

I first heard of the super-empowerment thing before I read much of Friedman. I felt dismayed, embarassed, and somewhat cheated when I later read the term while casually browsing through The World is Flat.

Re: mindfuck, I think the joker had a good point in the Dark Knight:

"I just did what I do best. I took your little plan and I turned it on itself. Look what I did to this city with a few drums of gas and a couple of bullets. Hmmm? You know... You know what I've noticed? Nobody panics when things go "according to plan." Even if the plan is horrifying! If, tomorrow, I tell the press that, like, a gang banger will get shot, or a truckload of soldiers will be blown up, nobody panics, because it's all "part of the plan." But when I say that one little old mayor will die, well then everyone loses their minds!"


The Joker is a really great example of it. Maybe if we ever meet up I can tell you my elaborate "Dark Knight" modern COIN analogy.


I would like to hear this DK analogy!

Also, why the immense focus in most works to view this through the lens of conflict, terrorism and negative outcomes? Arguably more "good" (thus far) has come out of the operations of super-empowered individuals either seeking an achievement of their own vision or merely using their wealth and influence in a variety of fields, having a net positive cumulative effect. Or perhaps I'm being overly simplistic here.


Well, I principally write about conflict, so that's pretty much the lens that I'm going to look through at it through.

I'll tell you the DK analogy on Facebook.

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