By Al Schumann on Tuesday July 31, 2012 11:43 PM

Veneration of the Lump entails complete commitment to a form of intellectual tail-chasing that closely resembles paranoia. The Lump-huggers read minds. The minds they're reading don't exist, which makes them much easier to read, which is impossible to do in the first place. They're worse off than people who start with a conclusion and shoehorn everything into support of it. The everything they're trying to shoehorn has no more basis than the minds that don't exist.

Comments (25)

Thanks, Al. I begin to wonder if I'm the one who's nuts for intervening with these bozos. I wish I could say that Madam Baum breathes new life into that tired old expression, "bourgeois stupidity" but that would be facile book-jacket blurb fluff. Let's just say she sucks the last hacking breath out of bourgeois stupidity.

Al Schumann:

It's an alarming lesson whenever you do intervene. These are people who are fully able to acknowledge a basic mistake. It's interesting that some of them can get awfully close. But then their guard goes back up. Clearly some ghastly fate is in store for apostates. Maybe the secret lump police would haul them off, never to be seen again.


lumps aside

this is excellent stuff

models of macro explication in poli econ con
run exactly as you suggest

" They're worse off than people who
start with a conclusion and shoehorn everything into support of it."

they start with a conclusion
which makes good abductive sense
but "the everything they're trying to shoehorn has no more basis than the minds that don't exist. "

this is literally the character of new keynesian models

with their singgle rational agent "simplification"
and their "calvo pricing "
macro outcomes founded
on something worse then mere candy land micro

i've come to lik this quip

high academy macro models
are designed
to bow to the right
and shoot to the left


what i like best about sandy's track down
of all lump fallacy queens
is its hunting the white whale like focus misdirection

only its a nice mock ahabianism

full of vermin supreme like
shape shifting
ghostly appearances and surprise
virtual ambushing

the cry "lump of labor fallacy"

strikes uncontrolable fear
into the hearts
of ghastly
marketeer ass bags everywhere

fight on sandy

we need ya even more then we love ya


"There just has to be less job creation going on than there is job destruction...."

there's always the battle between
creative destruction and destructive creation
as to which clubs to death
more job seals

is it to many old type jobs made obsolete
by creating too few new type jobs

or is it just too many god damn jobsters of every deswcription
chasing too few jobs that fit any description

the con is to jump back and forth betweeen these two quite distinct bads
keeping one jump ahead of the
liberal goo goo fudds
trying to shoot bads
that wonder around out there

call it structural
when its cyclical
and cyclical
when its structural

talk about cyclical solutions
when the problem is structural
and structural solutions
when the problem is cyclical

and at all times never ever fail to say
all our realistic solutions don't work anyway

do this with a certain minimum pertinacity

and the goo goo fudds will return
to their thinking parlors
as full of
grief for their fellow hu-mates
as they left with

yes its always both automation and off shoring

but at least now and again

the corporate system seems to need
a decent interval of
plain old pure destruction

a blast knocking out
hunks of the job markets' total demand

i guess
it must be good for profit margins or something
...errrr ...over the cycle

go ask the board room issimos

"is its hunting the white whale like focus misdirection"

YES! God, Paine, you are a saint! What's been bothering me has been the brooding -- trying to remember something that I couldn't quite remember, yet was unable to forget. It is Melville, Ahab, the whale. The whale!


the search for Moby Dick? (since no one else is voicing its formal name, I couldn't resist, .... shoot me!)

Al Schumann:

Does this means we're going to harpoon the Lump? Owen was nicknamed Queequeg back in the day, so I suppose it's fitting.

I have another Lump hypothesis. The purpose of the fallacy accusations has little to do the Lump qua Lump, but is instead the standard authoritarian practice of attempting to secure a socially compelling quality to an assertion of belief. It's an idiot's trump card for the lump-huggers. The accusations don't have to make sense. It's better if they don't.

Yes, Al, the lump is the trump. Authoritarians are uncomfortable with contingency and uncertainty. They cherish absolute truth, even if it takes a lie to impose it. Albert O. Hirschman outlined the classic rhetorical strategies for establishing this ersatz truth in "The Rhetoric of Reaction: Perversity, Futility, Jeopardy."


Thanks you three, for the bleak humor, I needed those smiles, I'm feeling morose as fuck. I just need to stop reading the noooz (especially on the technology front, I've already stopped reading the labor lies, though wish I could find a way to avoid the huge font 'headlines'), but then I'll really be disconnected, as I've already stopped 'watching' and 'listening' to the nooz.

I didn't have (or want) a television set for quite a few years in my early adulthood and it was somewhat frightening and sad the subtle disconnect it created with others outside my small circle.


Hating the size of the actual lump is a phallic fallacy

It's way too small a lump
But it's all the corporate ..errrr...receptical can accommodate

see they twist our tales here

They know we Hate the lump but they love that it's a fallacy

Even if the lump never gets big enough to satisfy us job dependers

They say fuck u could be bigger

If I tried a line like that back in my dating days....

Well those lumps are God given life time lumps
There's no fallacy in that only fate

Oh ya we coulda been born 150 years. Later then we were
When even those lumps are a policy variable
And accepting one's fate is indeed morphed into a fallacy


I'm new to the lump, so bear with me. Al. OP, Sandwich: what is the motive/agenda of people like Baum who perpetuate the imaginary fallacy?


It's not the fallacy that is imaginary
Chombolia sir

it's the proof by reference to an imaginary capitalist social system
that can and sometimes will
supply as many job hours as job seekers holders and needers everywhere and at any time might demand

Now sandy in his profound intuitive brilliance has turned the phrase into total gibberish ...just as it deserves

To be blunt about it

Often the lump is claimed to be real
Sometimes the fallacy is claimed to not be a fallacy but an iron law of job markets
Sometimes the fallacy is a. Validity lumped inside a fallacy
Sometimes it's just a case of visa versus or even worser


The motive

Defend the system of corporate form capitalist exploitation

all the full employment macro moves dreamed of by kalecki are done and right on cue
the spontaneous system will in it's good time
Create a job for all of us in need of one
Regardless of the rate of job destruction


This L of L fallacy line jumps out at us whenever job time sharing gets raised

See the guardians of our exploitation prefer we not see the job structure as
An administered ration system
Set to produce maximum sustainable exploitation

sharing job time would of course spread out the work and reduce the ranks of the jobless that ever press upon the windows of the hiring halls

Emboldening the corporate bargainers inside

" perhaps in light of those endless lines of job empty faces out there
u might reconsider
Your acceptable wage rate my friend "

Al Schumann:

CZ, the Lump in a nutshell:

The Lump-hugger makes an accusation and renders a judgment based on an imputed belief. The accused stands "guilty" of believing that there this is fixed amount of work to be done. There are variations on the schtick, but they all rely on the same mind-reading technique.


Got it. Thank you.


I should say: thank you both.

Al Schumann:

It can be confusing. The real fallacy is the imputation. The Sandwichman calls it the Lump of Labor Canard to distinguish it from the fallacy. What makes it even more confusing is that fallacy isn't believed by those who have been accused of believing it, but it does inform the thinking of those who make the accusation. It's a textbook example of authoritarian projection.


Unless I am misreading Owen: job sharing is good, right? Has always seemed so to me, but want to make sure I haven't been missing something.

Al Schumann:

Owen is right and you've read him correctly. At any given time, there is a limited amount of work for which people can expect to get paid. So job sharing is an effective way to reduce capitalist-generated unemployment, among other benefits. To make it work out for the workers, they should get the lost hours compensated by unemployment insurance payments.

In a nutshell:

Invoking the lump-of-labor fallacy is a passive-aggressive way of saying, "get a job, you (stupid) lazy (immoral) bums." There's always PLENTY of jobs around for those who really WANT to work. If you can't get a job, it is evidence of a clear MORAL lack on your part.

Or as E. Scrooge put it, "Are there no prisons? Are there no workhouses."

Are there no tumbrels? Are there no guillotines?


ahhhh, Sandwichman, ...don't forget the garrote!

Are there no garrotes!

... quite simple affordable ... and green! ..why, ...your own elbow can be used as a replacement for a simple strand of wire! our voices can (preferably) be used!

Choke the Mother Father Sister Brother ... Fuckers ... OFF.

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