Results 1 to 13 of 13

Thread: DEEP CAPTURE: Patrick Byrne - CEO of overstock.com

  1. #1
    Senior Member donk's Avatar
    Join Date
    26th December 2013
    Posts
    1,212
    Thanks
    2,001
    Thanked 5,821 Times in 1,174 Posts

    DEEP CAPTURE: Patrick Byrne - CEO of overstock.com

    Alright…I haven’t started this yet, just the opening mess of an intro, but it had 666 views so I took that as the universe telling me to check it out:


    Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J9Vys_kalUo



    What I was really looking for was the conference call where overstock.com founder Patrick Byrne made a name for himself amongst the corporate executive crowd by mentioning the “Sith Lord” behind the manipulation of the financial system. Anyone know what I'm talking about? Youtube making it tough on me...

    This guy was a major bridge from the mundane surface of the political-economic sh!tshow toward more esoteric explanations for why our arrangement for living “is the way it is”…deep capture, his blog chronicling his experience with naked short selling, leading him to the discovery that everyone/everything that matters has been “captured”, was a huge part in my awakening:

    https://www.deepcapture.com/about-deep-capture/

    It turns into a soap opera (sound familiar?), with the Russian mob and all of the financial media celebrities (especially Mad Money Jim Cramer)….a phenomenon in the mundane exactly parallel to the messes we find here, and just as murky and ignored by the masses

    Anyway…hope anyone who finds this interesting or has something to add, any experience with this material…I wanted to start a discussion…
    What is the purpose of your presence?

  2. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to donk For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (13th December 2020), Aragorn (7th October 2015), Chuckie (12th December 2020)

  3. #2
    Senior Member donk's Avatar
    Join Date
    26th December 2013
    Posts
    1,212
    Thanks
    2,001
    Thanked 5,821 Times in 1,174 Posts
    That video sucks, but it occurred to me while listening to it: there's interesting parallels to my perception of other things

    I came to learn that the operations area that handles "securities" at a financial institution is where the magic happens. I worked at trust company, processing income earned on mutual funds (dividends and capital gains), "posting" the cash the statements reported these things "made" by pushing a few buttons on my computer.

    By entering information on the right screen and pushing enter, the trust account's share balance increased by the amount of shares the reinvestment distribution was worth. That information was transmitted somehow, to somewhere, and "in the real world" the owners account now officially held more shares than it did a nanosecond before I hit enter.

    If it was cash (we got a check or wire) rather than reinvest, I would deposit it to the cash, and the actual money would no longer be in the deposit account at the bank it was in just a nanosecond before I hit enter...upon my magical action that "cash" moved from that account into the trust with the mutual fund shares...the time your check needed is really just the information transfer, it officially clears when the person in your can see that I hit enter, if they are qualified or care to look. The tech in aught-one was good enough that this was almost instantaneous then.

    Anyways, that's all I did all day. Receive information about mutual fund positions in trust accounts (for rich individuals/corporations or retirement plans), in the form of "cash" (incoming check or wire) or statements showing a reinvestment of income earned. A monkey could almost be taught to do it, and I'm a curious cube monkey. I worked on mutual funds but some of the monkeys in my neck of the cube farm (which I ended up being tasked with backing up) did the same thing, but with different securities.

    I was fascinated with what we called the fnma's (Fannie maes), gnma's (Ginny-maes), frmlc (I may have that wrong, I mean Freddie macs)...the securities created by the quasi-governmental organizations that bundled mortgages and college loans and other sorts of debt into relatively basic derivatives. That's what you can really learn about from "deep capture", which gave me a really comprehensive understanding of the concepts.

    Pat Byrne was more interested in the more exotic derivatives, as it directly effected his company. Naked short selling of stock is his specific expertise, which requires a fundamental understanding of the basics of debt is commoditized and packaged...and of course leveraged.

    I mentioned in my description of the processing the timing on the transfer of funds, because at the start of my journey to understand what the "DTC" unit at my company was, I had to start questioning what it was I was really doing. When I hit enter, did that trigger a truck to take cash from abc bank and deliver it to the vault where the trust account is, with the paper shares of mutual funds that should be there?

    Um, no...most financial securities (even company stock) did not really have anything backing them, not paper certificates anyway...they were just electronic positions, that "moved" through the DTC. In theory, cash did eventually get netted up at the end of and officially transferred (cleared), and banks were supposed to make the actual exchanges. But does that actually happen in real life? That's what people might ask if they went a level deeper in their thinking than a "good" finincial college like I went would have you believe, according to the "laws" of economics as we are taught.

    Anyway I'm just showing you a framework that lead me to reading hundreds of books and articles and news items, which ultimately lead me to understand that it is pretty magic, mostly bullsh!t, and easily manipulated. A completely faith based system that is so easily abused because there's so much "coded" language and built in complexity, and most people are only interested in the surface and take for granted that things should actually happen behind the scenes when money is "wired". No one is curious to question what money actually is, to understand how magical we have made the concepts that basically run our lives, that we're completely dependent on.
    What is the purpose of your presence?

  4. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to donk For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (13th December 2020), Aragorn (7th October 2015), Chuckie (12th December 2020)

  5. #3
    Senior Member donk's Avatar
    Join Date
    26th December 2013
    Posts
    1,212
    Thanks
    2,001
    Thanked 5,821 Times in 1,174 Posts
    What is the purpose of your presence?

  6. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to donk For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (13th December 2020), Chuckie (12th December 2020), Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (13th December 2020), Wind (13th December 2020)

  7. #4
    (account terminated)
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    10,004
    Thanks
    32,711
    Thanked 38,311 Times in 9,874 Posts
    He converted his father into his school of thought ... meaning the Deep State, but he goes too far for many. I don't worry too much about whether money is real or not, but I can see with your background where it would be compelling for you.

    One of my biggest issues is that I have no real passion for my work ... it's a job, my passion is psychology, sociology, and right now, nothing really motivates me, with the possible exception of UFO conspiracies...

    I'm curious as to what you think about 'money' from a philosophical perspective or even a conspiracy perspective if that is more relevant? Are you a Byrne devotee?

  8. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Chuckie For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (13th December 2020), donk (13th December 2020), Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (13th December 2020), Wind (13th December 2020)

  9. #5
    (account terminated)
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    10,004
    Thanks
    32,711
    Thanked 38,311 Times in 9,874 Posts
    Synchronicity alert: I was just doing some reading regarding 'types' in programming languages. How excruciatingly boring! Anywho ...

    Value Objects Don’t Have Identity

    I think it’s fair to say that the main characteristic of a value object is that it lacks identity. But what does that really mean in practice?

    Let’s say you go to the nearest ATM and deposit a $50 bill into your checking account. Then you drive a couple of hours to another town, go to a bank there, and withdraw $50.

    Now comes the question: does it matter to you that the bill you’ve got in your hands now isn’t the same one you deposited earlier? Of course not! And why is that? Well, the thing we generally care about, as it concerns money, is its value, not the vessel that holds that value.

    In other words, we couldn’t care less about the identity of that particular bill. The only thing that matters is its value.

    It’s no coincidence that money is a classic example of a value object.

  10. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Chuckie For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (13th December 2020), donk (13th December 2020), Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (13th December 2020), Wind (13th December 2020)

  11. #6
    Senior Member donk's Avatar
    Join Date
    26th December 2013
    Posts
    1,212
    Thanks
    2,001
    Thanked 5,821 Times in 1,174 Posts
    When I had time to write and read all day at my work (that I hate), I got way into comparing the economics I was sorta taught in college (like work, “college” was what I was supposedly doing from ‘95-‘00, I had no passion for the subject but the easiest path to a degree) to how things actually operate in the real world.

    I had grown and changed even from when I made this thread to whenever I was reading Byrne’s blog, I was not a devout “follower”, just found him interesting as he was one of few talking about naked short selling and the nature of derivates.


    Member derivatives?

    I am old enough to remember how shocked I was to hear that there were more than a QUADRILLION “dollars” outstanding or whatever you call it when they “hit”....or miss...or whatevertheEFF you call it when you lose your (ridiculous odds) bet.

    I have not even finished your article, let alone tried to figure out where I was and what I was looking at when I started this thread...I honestly only thought of him of as the dude explaining Eliot spritzer’s deal and someone said (maybe himself) he remembered an entire deck of cards looking at it once months before

    Oh and he was way into talking about Russian mob. Is he a Qanon weirdo? I would think he’d be anti-Q—from my impression of him whenever it was ES got arrested...but with just as wacky “support”. I mean, he was multi-millionaire in the time billionaire was a bad, unspoken, unbelievable word (member dat?) writing incredibly “believable” narrative
    What is the purpose of your presence?

  12. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to donk For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (13th December 2020), Chuckie (13th December 2020), Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (13th December 2020), Wind (13th December 2020)

  13. #7
    (account terminated)
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    10,004
    Thanks
    32,711
    Thanked 38,311 Times in 9,874 Posts
    I think that is what he does best as a 'character'. sorta like in the science field some people are better at 'popularizing' a subject than they are in practice, Carl Sagan comes to my mind first. Jerry Pournelle as a sci fi writer is better at that (which I think sucks) than he is as a 'philosopher' gone bad. Byrne appears to be excellent at both his vocation and his avocation. But at the same time he seems to have a screw loose and he eventually has let it become detached over time.

    If you're interested, I can post an article from some years back that tells the story of a group of high-powered investors, a group of about 5 members that included economics nobel prize winners and equally lofty business leaders that literally almost but not quite wrecked the entire world's financial foundation by way of a formulaic approach to investing. It's an amazing story. All that took place in the 80's, perhaps 90's. The one reason that I'm not that interested in money is because I've never had any to worry about ...

  14. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Chuckie For This Useful Post:

    donk (13th December 2020), Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (14th December 2020)

  15. #8
    (account terminated)
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    10,004
    Thanks
    32,711
    Thanked 38,311 Times in 9,874 Posts
    I looked and couldn't find it ... maybe i imagined the whole thing. What I really believe is that PBS over dramatized the story or the roles so it's not a widespread reality. I'll keep looking.

  16. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Chuckie For This Useful Post:

    donk (13th December 2020), Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (14th December 2020)

  17. #9
    Senior Member donk's Avatar
    Join Date
    26th December 2013
    Posts
    1,212
    Thanks
    2,001
    Thanked 5,821 Times in 1,174 Posts
    The only reason I focused on studying finance/economics was when I didn’t have any, I could still “move” millions around with the click of a button. All I do is execute a transfer, and bam—a “real” event where $$$ is moved from one account to another, and everyone believes it.

    It’s the true religion of the (global) neoliberal civilization that is our shared reality. I’ve been watching the grand wizards just change the rules to kick the can further down all my life...but it looks like the road ahead ends in a cliff, will be interesting watching the D party try to return that “normal”, hopefully people start waking up to ideas that are different than can kickin’
    What is the purpose of your presence?

  18. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to donk For This Useful Post:

    Chuckie (13th December 2020), Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (14th December 2020)

  19. #10
    (account terminated)
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    10,004
    Thanks
    32,711
    Thanked 38,311 Times in 9,874 Posts
    Don’t let the Nobel prize fool you. Economics is not a science
    Joris Luyendijk

    The award glorifies economists as tellers of timeless truths, fostering hubris and leading to disaster


    A Nobel prize in economics implies that the human world operates much like the physical world. Photograph: Jasper Rietman

    Business as usual. That will be the implicit message when the Sveriges Riksbank announces this year’s winner of the “Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel”, to give it its full title. Seven years ago this autumn, practically the entire mainstream economics profession was caught off guard by the global financial crash and the “worst panic since the 1930s” that followed. And yet on Monday the glorification of economics as a scientific field on a par with physics, chemistry and medicine will continue.

    The problem is not so much that there is a Nobel prize in economics, but that there are no equivalent prizes in psychology, sociology, anthropology. Economics, this seems to say, is not a social science but an exact one, like physics or chemistry – a distinction that not only encourages hubris among economists but also changes the way we think about the economy.

    A Nobel prize in economics implies that the human world operates much like the physical world: that it can be described and understood in neutral terms, and that it lends itself to modelling, like chemical reactions or the movement of the stars. It creates the impression that economists are not in the business of constructing inherently imperfect theories, but of discovering timeless truths.

    To illustrate just how dangerous that kind of belief can be, one only need to consider the fate of Long-Term Capital Management, a hedge fund set up by, among others, the economists Myron Scholes and Robert Merton in 1994. With their work on derivatives, Scholes and Merton seemed to have hit on a formula that yielded a safe but lucrative trading strategy. In 1997 they were awarded the Nobel prize. A year later, Long-Term Capital Management lost $4.6bn (£3bn)in less than four months; a bailout was required to avert the threat to the global financial system. Markets, it seemed, didn’t always behave like scientific models.

    In the decade that followed, the same over-confidence in the power and wisdom of financial models bred a disastrous culture of complacency, ending in the 2008 crash. Why should bankers ask themselves if a lucrative new complex financial product is safe when the models tell them it is? Why give regulators real power when models can do their work for them?

    Many economists seem to have come to think of their field in scientific terms: a body of incrementally growing objective knowledge. Over the past decades mainstream economics in universities has become increasingly mathematical, focusing on complex statistical analyses and modelling to the detriment of the observation of reality.

    Consider this throwaway line from the former top regulator and London School of Economics director Howard Davies in his 2010 book The Financial Crisis: Who Is to Blame?: “There is a lack of real-life research on trading floors themselves.” To which one might say: well, yes, so how about doing something about that? After all, Davies was at the time heading what is probably the most prestigious institution for economics research in Europe, located a stone’s throw away from the banks that blew up.


    Howard Davies, pictured in 2006. Photograph: Eamonn McCabe/The Guardian

    All those banks have “structured products approval committees”, where a team of banking staff sits down to decide whether their bank should adopt a particular new complex financial product. If economics were a social science like sociology or anthropology, practitioners would set about interviewing those committee members, scrutinising the meetings’ minutes and trying to observe as many meetings as possible. That is how the kind of fieldwork-based, “qualitative” social sciences, which economists like to discard as “soft” and unscientific, operate. It is true that this approach, too, comes with serious methodological caveats, such as verifiability, selection bias or observer bias. The difference is that other social sciences are open about these limitations, arguing that, while human knowledge about humans is fundamentally different from human knowledge about the natural world, those imperfect observations are extremely important to make.

    Compare that humility to that of former central banker Alan Greenspan, one of the architects of the deregulation of finance, and a great believer in models. After the crash hit, Greenspan appeared before a congressional committee in the US to explain himself. “I made a mistake in presuming that the self-interests of organisations, specifically banks and others, were such that they were best capable of protecting their own shareholders and their equity in the firms,” said the man whom fellow economists used to celebrate as “the maestro”.

    In other words, Greenspan had been unable to imagine that bankers would run their own bank into the ground. Had the maestro read the tiny pile of books by financial anthropologists he may have found it easier to imagine such behaviour. Then he would have known that over past decades banks had adopted a “zero job security” hire-and-fire culture, breeding a “zero-loyalty” mentality that can be summarised as: “If you can be out of the door in five minutes, your horizon becomes five minutes.”

    While this was apparently new to Greenspan it was not to anthropologist Karen Ho, who did years of fieldwork at a Wall Street bank. Her book Liquidated emphasises the pivotal role of zero job security at Wall Street (the same system governs the City of London). The financial sociologist Vincent Lépinay’s Codes of Finance, a book about the division in a French bank for complex financial products, describes in convincing detail how institutional memory suffers when people switch jobs frequently and at short notice.

    Perhaps the most pernicious effect of the status of economics in public life has been the hegemony of technocratic thinking. Political questions about how to run society have come to be framed as technical issues, fatally diminishing politics as the arena where society debates means and ends. Take a crucial concept such as gross domestic product. As Ha-Joon Chang makes clear in 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Capitalism, the choices about what not to include in GDP (household work, to name one) are highly ideological. The same applies to inflation, since there is nothing neutral about the decision not to give greater weight to the explosion in housing and stock market prices when calculating inflation.


    Ha-Joon Chang, pictured at the Hay-on-Wye festival, Wales. Photograph: David Levenson/Getty Images

    GDP, inflation and even growth figures are not objective temperature measurements of the economy, no matter how many economists, commentators and politicians like to pretend they are. Much of economics is politics disguised as technocracy – acknowledging this might help open up the space for political debate and change that has been so lacking in the past seven years.

    Would it not be extremely useful to take economics down one peg by overhauling the prize to include all social sciences? The Nobel prize for economics is not even a “real” Nobel prize anyway, having only been set up by the Swedish central bank in 1969. In recent years, it may have been awarded to more non-conventional practitioners such as the psychologist Daniel Kahneman. However, Kahneman was still rewarded for his contribution to the science of economics, still putting that field centre stage.

    Think of how frequently the Nobel prize for literature elevates little-known writers or poets to the global stage, or how the peace prize stirs up a vital global conversation: Naguib Mahfouz’s Nobel introduced Arab literature to a mass audience, while last year’s prize for Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzai put the right of all children to an education on the agenda. Nobel prizes in economics, meanwhile, go to “contributions to methods of analysing economic time series with time-varying volatility” (2003) or the “analysis of trade patterns and location of economic activity” (2008).

    A revamped social science Nobel prize could play a similar role, feeding the global conversation with new discoveries and insights from across the social sciences, while always emphasising the need for humility in treating knowledge by humans about humans. One good candidate would be the sociologist Zygmunt Bauman, whose writing on the “liquid modernity” of post-utopian capitalism deserves the largest audience possible. Richard Sennett and his work on the “corrosion of character” among workers in today’s economies would be another. Will economists volunteer to share their prestigious prize out of their own acccord? Their own mainstream economic assumptions about human selfishness suggest they will not.

    Quote Originally posted by donk View Post
    The only reason I focused on studying finance/economics was when I didn’t have any, I could still “move” millions around with the click of a button. All I do is execute a transfer, and bam—a “real” event where $$$ is moved from one account to another, and everyone believes it.

    It’s the true religion of the (global) neoliberal civilization that is our shared reality. I’ve been watching the grand wizards just change the rules to kick the can further down all my life...but it looks like the road ahead ends in a cliff, will be interesting watching the D party try to return that “normal”, hopefully people start waking up to ideas that are different than can kickin’
    just by things i've been reading while looking for the above article ... I see your point.
    Last edited by Chuckie, 14th December 2020 at 15:08.

  20. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Chuckie For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (13th December 2020), Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (14th December 2020)

  21. #11
    Senior Member donk's Avatar
    Join Date
    26th December 2013
    Posts
    1,212
    Thanks
    2,001
    Thanked 5,821 Times in 1,174 Posts
    Omg, I just went to deepcature.com or wherever the eff it sends you now. I was an admirer of a goddam loon. I am feeling like the “ufo experiencer” fan...I keep thinking “but what he was saying in aught eight was so good and definitely true, it made total sense”

    Sheesh, now I am going to have to go back to look at those early presentations he did that had me so “captured” to see wtf I was buying into. I know the scenario be described about “naked short selling” fit the narrative, so to speak, of the finance industry at the time, but now it is sus
    Last edited by donk, 13th December 2020 at 22:24.
    What is the purpose of your presence?

  22. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to donk For This Useful Post:

    Aianawa (13th December 2020), Chuckie (14th December 2020), Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (14th December 2020), Wind (14th December 2020)

  23. #12
    Super Moderator United States Dreamtimer's Avatar
    Join Date
    7th April 2015
    Location
    Patapsco Valley
    Posts
    14,610
    Thanks
    70,673
    Thanked 61,977 Times in 14,520 Posts
    Maybe you do have to be crazy to be in the financial world. Or perhaps you go crazy after entering.

  24. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Dreamtimer For This Useful Post:

    Chuckie (14th December 2020), Elen (15th December 2020), Wind (14th December 2020)

  25. #13
    (account terminated)
    Join Date
    3rd April 2017
    Posts
    10,004
    Thanks
    32,711
    Thanked 38,311 Times in 9,874 Posts
    hmmm! I've got a migraine this morning ... thinking about money will do it nearly every damn time.

  26. The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Chuckie For This Useful Post:

    Dreamtimer (14th December 2020), Elen (15th December 2020), Wind (14th December 2020)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •