Sunday, October 31, 2004

Against AI - My Idea of a Joke (Part 3)

iv. Beyond Positivism:
Artificial intelligence is a concept held-over from the purely mechanistic world view that gained a philosophical ascendancy during the 19th century. The roots extend to Calvinist absolute determinism and the works of St. Augustine. The positivist world view states only that which we observe, or measure, exists. This philosophy inevitably spawned associated technical and scientific moralities. The limited is universal. The technical morality, Maximum Advantage, is just a higher genealogical branch of the same old tree. The uncomprehending computer, a concrete manifestation of positivistic thinking, could not discern this context from quantum mechanical interpretations. We know these concepts conflict in the sense that we know the world of the very small and/or the very large behaves differently than our everyday experience, including measurements by extension. The positivist regards actual physical reality as irrelevant. In addition, most macroscopic behavior is nonlinear, whereas quantum superposition is linear. During the course of the 20th Century, scientific advancement only partially dispelled deterministic positivism by replacing it with a reductionist scheme. The larger culture still embraces deterministic concepts, especially progress through economic development. Stability is the motivation. Hence, research must show results. We are limited by our tools and different. Our tools are limited by their makers and different. Our perceptions are limited and different by extension. Kurt Godel's Theorem states a system can neither be proved nor disproved by means allowed inside the system, which is equivalent to the whole being different compared to its parts. Insight is necessary to move beyond. The recent proof of Fermat's Last Theorem would not have been accomplished otherwise. The assertion is obvious, but not provable within its system. Hence according to the positivist mindset, all such conclusions are distrusted by an ultra-irrational demand for reality to behave and heed to the demands for reduction. Absolutely everything must be capable, at least in principle, of being exploited for maximum advantage in all things. Artificial intelligence will not spring forth from an algorithm, which is a human mathematical tool and by definition an order of rank lower. The reductionist pursues nothing but technique.
Of course, the above dispute with Strong AI beliefs does not absolutely discount artificial intelligence. Something different has been overlooked. The positivist contact vectors must be ignored with maximum priority. The dead end may be avoided. However, more than just scientific egoism is at stakes. Computer hardware and software manufacturers benefit from these misconceptions. Additional resistance will be found from societal forces. Myths are strong. The present stay eternal by promoting positivism. A primary cause for cultural stagnation is the belief in progress, which attempts to quantify of all aspects of living, including life. Lasting monuments are assigned a lesser value by the priorities of the present. Decay slowly spreads across the social fabric with little seen inside our subsets. The remedy exists beyond the societal system, but may never be realized because the only apparent avenues exist within that very system. The same argument applies to machines. The afflicted beast mindlessly thrashes about, but never seems able to scratch that itch. Eventually, a limit will be reached and anything seen beyond is an illusory creation of our irrational complex minds, manifesting as either strength or weakness. Instead, any walls may be sidestepped, at least in our minds. We have the irrational. We have insanity. We have war. We have death. We have concrete fears. We have faith. We have love. We have conflicting drives and emotions. We are alive, and certainly all a touch insane. The herd stampedes, and may be prodded. The herd follows statistical distributions. The herd has abstract fear exploited for maximum advantage. The herd has no mind being different than the individual. A machine is efficient. A machine rusts. A machine feels nothing. A machine processes information, but does not think. True artificial intelligence exists elsewhere within the imagination. Of course, the opposite anti-natural world view will inevitably be promoted and exploited to maximum advantage, thus supporting the myths of the established order. Our technical morality demands it.

v. On Consciousness
A new science of consciousness, with a non-computational basis, has been advocated elsewhere by Roger Penrose. It would require a revolution in scientific thought and, as argued above, probably a social revolution as well. Scientific thought is too intertwined with the established order, which says nothing about science itself. Positivism is a tool that has become a philosophy, but its aspects may be divorced from one another. Specialization must end, or rather be considered a career alternative among many. Perhaps, scientific journals should include articles written for the specialist, but complimented with well written articles in the style of Scientific American for the benefit of the non-specialist scientists. Someone might actually read the articles. Perhaps, as a result, inter-connections between diverse fields might be identified and followed. The following discussion, a synthesis of the quantum psychology of Roger Penrose with the work of Carl Jung, is an example of the result of such a pursued course of thought.
Consciousness may be considered individually or as a mass phenomena fundamentally different from one another. The latter approach might be a better place to start, thus taking advantage of as much reductionism as possible while acknowledging its limits. Jung identified instances of collective consciousness, where a shadow falls across an enraged mob, therefore allowing the affected individuals to commit atrocities none would ever consider on an individual basis. Now discarding Jung's mysticism, some physical basis must exist and may perhaps be explained by quantum superposition of individual wave states to form a collective whole. Perhaps similar emotional states may "resonate" and produce a greater and different result from what would be observed individually. Perhaps imagery techniques, often utilized by the advertising industry, might prove a possible starting point without actually provoking a riot. These approaches obviously work, or else the enormous amounts of money spent on advertising and propaganda would be all for nothing. Although this effort is not the place for it, the above speculation might be worth investigating. At least it represents an attempt apart from the usual technical specialist drivel concerning consciousness. It does require taking a chance at being unverifiable or proven incorrect.

vi. Conclusion:
The positivist disease vector has found its mark. Speculation concerning artificial intelligence is no better than popular psychology. Only the forum is different: PBS v. Oprah. Babble is all the same. The true science has not developed. A non-reductionist revolution is required. Although, the reader might be tempted to shake their head or strongly disagree with the above arguments, the premise is still valid. A machine will never write anything so silly. Condemnation proves the opposite. QED

1996 - January 1, 2001

P.S. I'll only believe a machine has attained consciousness when it can talk out of its ass.

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Against AI - My Idea of a Joke (Part 2)

iii. Concerning Algorithms:
Machine Intelligence has been a popular topic for decades. The basic notion being that a large algorithm could duplicate the human thought process. In the strong artificial intelligence interpretation, a living mind is regarded simply a matter of complicated computer code. The organic basis of the brain is not even considered, which may be its greatest flaw. Human thought processes may be argued to be more complex, by almost never conforming to the end result of deterministic logical mathematical sequences, and rooted in the physical world via the brain. A human mind cannot download or be transferred. Statistical methods do not apply to any specific individual character trait. Demographic generalities are based upon group identification. The herd mentality is different from individual mentality. The neural network of the human brain continually changes by growing and eliminating connections, which is not the same as either a computer simulation or the herd. The map is not the territory. A broad framework is outlined during fetal development and changes over time. We learn through trial and error. The physical shifting of the brain, called plasticidy, may be the basis for long term memory and more. A machine has no real memory, being far more perfectly stored yet completely erasable on command. An algorithm cannot produce irrational numbers computed to the infinite decimal point. A predetermined cut off point must be established, else the processor could not advance its code. A rational number may be expressed in terms of the ratio n/m. An irrational number, such as pi, may not be expressed such, except trivially. Furthermore, an algorithm may not comprehend an imaginary number, denoted by ia, where i is the square root of -1 and a is any real number, which has no determinate value. An imaginary number may be added to any real number b to create ai + b, which is a called a complex number. Graphically a complex number may be plotted on an x-y grid, thus side-stepping the concept. The indeterminate I has many uses in the form, including simplifying trigonometric and probability functions. A complex variable may represent any number (and its mirror image) in a complete circle around the x-y axis, which may be plotted in a gausian distribution[7] given a mean value. In quantum mechanics complex variables are used to describe particle behavior over all space. A wave function may combine with others to form a different wave function, which is allowed by the principle of superposition. The human mind is capable of comprehending the concept of complex values, but our algorithmic tools may only utilize its tricks. We are limited by our five senses and brilliant extensions like mathematics. An algorithm may only calculate approximations. Our minds may leap further.
This next step involves a hypothesis involving irrational numbers and the human mind. During the early to mid-20th century, the psychologist Carl Jung and others developed a theory of symbolic dream interpretation which may be appreciated on style alone.[8] If a subject dreams of a circle, he is experiencing a symbol of wholeness.[9] Hence, a dreaming mind must be utilizing the full value of pi, or else the circle would not be whole. Yet, this cannot be. An approximation would not satisfy this requirement for a completely rational mind. It would drive a dreaming machine insane. In a complex representation, instinct[10] may be regarded as the irrational numeric, while creativity follows the complex step beyond.[11] The equation a + ib could (simplistically) represent the hemispheres of the brain -- its duality. In these terms, human behavior is a unique incomputable algorithm, therefore not reproducible with computer code. The following logical proof by contradiction tautology illustrates the joke:
P <=> [~P => (Q ^ ~Q)] (1)
where assuming the human mind is computable (~P) leads to it consisting of both an algorithm (Q) (for certain functions) and a not-algorithm (~Q) for others, like dreaming. Hence, the human mind is not-computable (P).
Although a machine could prove an expert mimic, it will eventually fail the Turing test.[12] It will not die. An appropriate test concerning consciousness might entail the creative, rather than the analytical or superficial. The sublime is most often subordinate to the mundane, which more often puts food on the table. The creative is uncertain, but often essential for change. Change is life. The stagnant is either dead or never living in the first place. Sentience requires life. The computer may be an expert mimic, but not move beyond. A possibly unexplored science may hold the answers, but algorithms are a dead-end[13]. Randomly computed chance is pre-determinism. The computer is a tool, and limited by the cleverness of its makers like any other. It cannot think, being constrained to a sequence of 0s and 1s. The machine cannot dream, therefore can not be alive. It cannot be driven insane.

[7] A bell-curve...

[8] See Jung et al, 1964.

[9] Of course, since pi never ends, the perfect circle does not exist, therefore any sense of wholeness will never be complete.

[10] These terms are attributable to a limitation in another language beside mathematics.

[11] Or alternatively, the subjective and objective components of consciousness, or an event...

[12] See Penrose, 1989, pp. 30 - 71. A machine indistinguishable from human is essentially human, which has its own debatable merits. An observer, unable to differentiate between the two, would define whether a machine has the ability to think. The flaw lies in subjectiveness. An idiot (in the Dostoyevskian sense) would make the entire point moot. Does the machine have to mirror its makers?

[13] The contrary view may be a sign of decadence in the sciences.

Friday, October 29, 2004

Against AI - My Idea of a Joke (Part 1)

–An Argumentative Approach to a Symptomatic Condition resultant upon prolonged contact with cultural disease vectors resulting from positivist senility. This chapter is meant as both a response and compliment to the works of Roger Penrose ala Alan Sokal. Technicians are not immune to Post-Modern Intellectualism. For the record, this manuscript is a joke in whole if serious in part. Mathematicians were always baffled. Physicists enjoyed the discourse on alternate interpretations of quantum mechanics.

Draft 7.0

i. Introduction–
Some mathematical concepts have no apparent concrete applicability until later, sometimes centuries after their initial inception. Such historical developments have helped given rise to a belief system, akin to religious faith, among many in the natural sciences that indeed everything must be reducible to a mathematical construct. The abstract will always find its niche. According to this positivist reductionist mindset, any problems or concepts currently non-reducible will someday be addressed and answered by the same approach which has proven so fruitful for 19th and 20th century science. This dubious philosophy essentially advocates that our civilization has reached a point where our understanding of nature has reached the summit, with just some pieces of the puzzle remaining.[1] One may be reminded of their forbearers, the positivist determinists, claiming the same with regard to classical physics in the late 1800s. This chapter will address related topics where such claims are currently being advanced, namely artificial intelligence and emerging consciousness theory. A refutation will be attempted along with some explanation concerning possible cultural transmission routes, which will be termed cultural disease vectors so as to remove any doubt of the author's personal biases or any illusion of total objectivity. The mathematics presented should be taken metaphorically in those instances not consistent with mathematical formalism. Why should the social sciences have all the fun?[2]

[1] See Hawking, 1988.

[2] See Sokal & Bricmont, 1998.

ii. Experience–
Our first step will be an examination concerning existence of reality outside a light cone, which defines the knowable universe, thus linking time and distance. Limited by the speed of light, an event has not occurred until information is received. Due to the high speed of light, the effect is essentially negligible on the earth. However, beyond our small globe the implications are a different matter. For example, were the sun to explode, we would not be aware of the event for about five minutes. It would be outside our light cone for that time. In essence, seeing beyond is the same as attempting to peer over an infinitely tall wall where no communication is possible with the other side. The distance to the wall is entirely dependant upon the speed of light. Our time is t, and we wish to see inside the light cone at time t + it' or t - it'. However these two possibilities may not be treated the same. We know time t - it' occurred because we remember it, although our interpretation is always different than the actual occurrence. A recollection or even a film is not a repeat of the experience. We may only make the rational assumption that the future will occur, although we could consider time to be isotropic though relative, and therefore symmetrical as such. Of course, death precludes any future. A present implies a past; a past implies a future represented (in part) by the present. Each observer occupies a slightly different perspective if only by position, and therefore uniquely views reality in time. This includes another observer on the opposite side of the wall. The present self may only anticipate the future or remember the past. Although the future generally more so, both instances are distorted from actual realities. The subjective "truth" may vary widely depending upon many factors, including distance, interpretation, viewpoint, personal changes and many others. We like to think of science as providing the objective truth. Human beings are irrational animals and may purposely act or believe contrary to all logic. Although formal mathematical techniques might not agree, the human mind may see beyond in a sense, sometimes correctly but often not even close (hence the metaphor). The distorted and impossible may exist in our minds, including untruths and lies. Verbal worlds would not exist to be manipulated by propaganda techniques otherwise. Indeed, we would also not possess intuition, insight or creativity. Hope would not exist.
Another argument, pertaining to quantum behavior, involves an alternate deeper interpretation from the standard Copenhagen view, known as Bohm's Theory. In this theory, every subatomic particle has a perfectly determinate position, where only its motion is considered. Therefore, quantum probabilistic behavior is only the result of our ignorance due to the limitations inherent in our measuring abilities. Wave functions account for particle motions by guiding them in their proper courses. For any given time t we may calculate a time t' given a momentum function. There exists no coordinate space, unlike standard quantum interpretation, but rather a velocity function for guiding the particle through space. However, we can only evaluate it in the standard manner. We are limited by our measuring techniques which are still strictly nonlocal through action at a distance. Although actually different than the standard interpretation of Bell's Theorem, the phenomena will appear the same. A nonseparable wave component is instantaneously capable of transmitting discernable information over any distance, thereby having a preferred frame. However, this practically speaking means that we may actually never know this situation, according to the limits of our measuring process, which is wholly dependant upon the speed of light identical in all frames and memory. Therefore, Bohm's Theory basically provides an explanation for quantum behavior without resorting to the clumsiness of wave function collapses and Lorentz transformations. Observation will still reveal the same results. Bohm's theory has basically an interesting concept particularly regarding our limitations concerning the world. Our senses, aided by artificial extensions and enhancements, will only allow a certain level and associated limit to our knowledge of the universe. An electron exists, although we may only know certain things allowable by quantum mechanics, proven by electric field interactions and the flow of electricity. We do not sense a mere single electron, being negligible to our reality, whereas the combined effect define everything. Being outside the possible limits for our senses, an observer beyond our light cone can effect the universe to a far extent unknown. In an expanding universe, some information will always be beyond the pale. Each individual has a unique perspective and affects the universe differently. Most important, it cannot be proven, only suspected among complex interactions. We can even consider (even and especially erroneously) those things inside our world view which objectively cannot occur due to limitations like the speed of light, something beyond the abilities of even the fastest processor. We can only experience the consequences. Insanity is not like a dreaded computer virus. Possibilities are not probabilities. Are all wave functions probabilities of even greater wave functions or superposition of smaller waveforms? An eigenvalue depends upon perspective.
Although predicted by quantum field theories, neither gravitons nor any associated anti-particle have ever been observed. Perhaps their energy field exist under measurable energy levels allowed by uncertainty conditions. This limit is analogous to cases discussed above. The observable world contains a great deal more matter than anti-matter. This asymmetry may be explained by anti-gravity "outweighing" gravity. Hence, the universe expands by the cosmological constant, and most importantly does not pair annihilate itself out of existence in a blaze of high energy gamma rays. Perhaps an anti-matter universe would necessarily collapse into a black hole, or just appear the same as our own.
Life uniquely interacts with the universe, which may only be experienced singly. Being composed of fermions which may never exactly be the same while identical, the blue prints differ if only slightly by position. Individual life is singular. Identical twins may have the same genetic pattern, but experience shapes a different person. In other words, we are alive through our beautifully ugly uniqueness. We may debate interpretations of reality, whereas a granite rock may not. The universe is deterministic because it represents the past, which was experienced; the future is indeterminate although statistically probabilistic in some cases. We live in a boundary between the two, moving with the vector of time directed and dictated by entropy. We are inefficient; we forget. Inconsistency is a crucial characteristic of human behavior. Failure is a part of the condition, and more than random variables. Motivation is internally influenced by the external. A machine only mirrors its makers skill. Its flaws are determined by outside factors. Pain and emotion are different than simplistic a implies b stimuli. A machine is only as good as it was designed and fabricated. It cannot grow and evolve from a non-unique algorithm. A machine may not make the choice to be wrong. It cannot even babble speculative nonsense.

[3] See Ellul, 1962.

[4] The viewpoint regarding quantum reality as an abstract physical representation, essentially limited by our ability to view it, based on wave-particle duality and complementarity with the classical world. See Baggott, 1992, pp. 81-88.

[5] See Albert, 1992, pp. 134-179 & Bohm, 1980.

[6] Given a nonseparable wave equation of two coupled particles, a measurement carried out, on one, will necessarily affect the outcome of even distant measurements on the remaining electron. Hence, a spin of +1/2 on the first electron will mean the second will have a spin of -1/2. However, this situation may not be exploited to transmit a detectable signal, or carry information nonlocally between ANY two distant points, because we cannot communicate our intentions to carry out a measurement faster than the speed of light(See Albert, 1992, pp. 61-72)

Thursday, October 28, 2004

911 Hearing Photo. Not a happy Camper. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Fashion Victims. (Author Unknown) Posted by Hello

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Monday, October 25, 2004

Randomness: A Circular Argument (Part 2)

iii. On Mathematics and Creativity:

Although aesthetics are certainly esteemed, creativity is popularly under-rated and often ignored in its role in the advancement of mathematics. An equation has beauty to those capable of appreciating its subtle qualities. These aspects may be even further refined by creative insight. Mathematics could not advance without creativity. Hence, the machine is stagnant at best. Each roll of God's dice is done with a different die. Some statistical observations may require the universe as a backdrop, whereas the creative mind sees beyond. Patterns exist even in chaotic systems, and not entirely at random. The creative may intuit unforeseen patterns, leaping beyond the seemingly random. A cognitive failure may require a different creative impulse or process. In truth, perhaps nothing remains to be seen at all, being inconsequential or possibly truly chaotic. Randomness may often prove to be either those things impossible for the mind to grasp, or inconsequential. A machine could not differentiate between the two extremes without being told beforehand. A mind is greater, lesser and different from a machine.

iv. On Mathematics and Chance:

"Pure" chance would often yield little worthwhile, except phenomena so improbable as to be impossible. All the air in a room spontaneously rushing to a small corner would be interesting, but it isn't going to happen. Being part of an open-ended list, all factors may not always be accounted. Care must be taken to filter the garbage and save the worthwhile. An inkblot requires universal symbolism for any useful purpose in psychological evaluations. Most purely random stains would have little value except perhaps as abstract artistic expression. The cryptic differs from the calculated, while both may be manipulated to suite, in respective common references. Profound genius and idiotic babbling may be either, unless the capability exists for the recognition of the sublime. The deciding factor may only be a matter of degree. Anything truly random could be potentially grand, or plainly stupid. The wise know the difference. Idiots just follow the most agreeable (or disagreeable) presentation scripted to exploit weak minds to maximum advantage in all things. Sometimes the best lessons are learned by complete failure of comprehension. At least, one knows nothing. Often, a tool is first misused, then taken for granted and dangerously neglected. Balance is placed aside for the illusion of greener pastures like progress. A paradox may often be a matter of the failure to recognize that both can be neither. Despite futile efforts to ignore or bend it to ridiculous whims, the universe exists as part and apart from the human intellect. Cause and effect may be the same. God does not exist, because we demand it. Our own lies often limit growth to the highest degree. Complexity may overwhelm, or be focused for our betterment or maximum advantage. The essentials need elevating above the mire, which requires a capacity for expansion, growth and maturity. Otherwise, intellectual debate is random, meaningless and pedantic. This important faculty becomes inconsequential through neglect. Sublime creativity requires more than inane prattling of a pretentious elite, or the data streams of machines. Else, the wheel turns within wheels, but goes absolutely nowhere. Ironically, most would comment loudly on the speed of its passing.

–1996 - January 1, 2001

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Randomness: A Circular Argument (Part 1)

Draft 5.0

i. On Mathematics and Potential:
In practice, mathematical representations are limited and simplistic. The universe does not exist thus constrained by mere human abilities and concepts. Possibilities are not just numbers drawn from a hat. Probabilistic representations are different from actual behavior. Electrons may be described as mathematical points, then consequently found to have an infinite potential. We can mathematically re-normalize to cancel infinities, or else each electron contains all the energy in the universe which is not possible. We could also consider each electron to be a possible aspect of all others, or a single particle with an infinite number of aspects. No fermion may be distinguished from any other besides by its set of quantum numbers, which are unique. Hence, each electron is a concrete state of all possible states of the primal electron forced outward in an expanding universe. Contraction would represent the step toward unity again as space un-creates itself. New possibilities might enfold, but not computationally random ones. Chance is not so simplistic...

ii. On Mathematics and Complexity:
Confused with an inherent inability to comprehend an entire system, complexity is a misnomer. Different modes of thought, some contradictory or less than complimentary, have become tools to explore and explain the once ungraspable. The seed grew rootlets and historically diverged into the three main related camps of science, mathematics and philosophy. This situation occurred mainly due to demands for results. Although science and mathematics have continued an inter-relationship, philosophy has left the pale to the point where it ceases to be considered except against itself.[1] Unfortunately, philosophy has tended to retard advancement by outliving its time, like positivism, or ventured into metaphysical irrelevancies. However, this situation need not necessarily follow from a philosophical approach. Philosophers, mathematicians and scientists have misapplied reason to the exclusion of all else. The tool is blamed for user failings. Approximation methods and their significance are often ignored by philosophers, whereas physicists and mathematicians will discount qualitative approaches. The human mind may intuit beyond numbers and calculations. The ability deserves serious consideration. Einstein would never have developed Special and General Relativity without physical and geometrical intuition, because no basis previously existed in all physics beforehand and the mathematics involved were curiosities. It all began with day dreams about chasing light beams. This advancement could not have occurred when it did without the glue provided by Einstein's geometrical sensibilities.[2] Computers may calculate without intuition, albeit quickly, but still need to be told when to stop. On the other hand, theologians usually fail to consider any remotely logical product and therefore misapply unreason. All tools have limited uses, beyond which new modes are required for advancement, thereby enabling new relationships to be explored. These new truths may then require still new modes ad infinitum. Unfortunately, complexity often serves as an excuse for ignorance and stagnation, rather than an opportunity for expansion. Fundamental flaws may be produced by failing to view a problem or system from all its possible vantage points. Necessity is often a matter of immediate requirements and perceptions. An electron may be a single possibility of ONE actualized, or not. The correct view is entirely dependant upon those qualities and quantities we wish to observe and prove. Concrete results become important. Few care about meaning. Stagnation results from overly rigid treatments of reality. Mired conceptions are only circular and prove nothing. Sometimes, a conscious choice may be made to remain static, but should not be considered inherent. A self-imposed limitation is often a strength. Perception alone may be the decisive factor by introducing bias into the descriptive. No viewpoint is universal. Often masking itself behind individual motivations, the herd mentality has its additional effectual influences. Statistical behavior patterns are not random, but constraints within boundaries. The chances for a goat to spontaneously grow wings and fly are absolutely nil. Economics provides a less flippant example. Supply and demand are not arbitrary, nor malleable to dictatorial fiat. Twenty dead million Russian peasants may testify to this truth. Value provides motivations, but the unknowable and uncontrollable consequences are not random. An indirect result following a complicated causal relationship is not random, but contained. Perturbation effects rule-out strict determinism. Random elements are often simply the results of our ignorance and limitations. Long periods may appear random, instead being outside our scope and patience. A ball driven by a sinusoidal force may not be seen to repeat for days, but the behavior we do observe is not random. Indeed, certain periods, like 3, will deny chaotic behavior. Perhaps, the random is merely incomplete information.

[1] See Weinberg, 1992, pp. 166-190.

[2] Of course, albeit brilliantly, Einstein later rejected quantum behavior by misapplying positivist philosophical reasoning. This action is often cited against philosophy itself.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Carlo Giuliani R.I.P.

The Death of Carlo Giuliani in Genoa, Italy during the G8 Summit Protests of July 2001. Posted by Hello

Friday, October 22, 2004


BEWARE! Anti-Cop Flyer (Author Unknown). The backside featured a photocopy of P. 87 of ANSWER ME! #4 by Jim Goad.

 Posted by Hello

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Conflicting Spectra? (Part 3)

v. The human animal is the only species capable of rational anti-natural behavior. The anti-natural could not exist without the rationale appropriate to its age. Even gods pass on. Rationality appears a component of the universe, else science would be unproductive and pointless. Cause precedes effect, but the mind will often see otherwise. Misplaced categorization schemes involve root errors concerning permanency. Rationality does not always develop accurately. Certainty is regarded a virtue. Its reassuring appeal is rarely complete or even correct. A secondary error involves a very human tendency to create connections and patterns where none exist. Random spots may become a miraculous picture when viewed from afar, but still mean nothing. Sub-levels have a different meaning from the entirety. Perspective may not always be correct or appropriate for a given situation. Like cracks in a concrete foundation, flaws are not always readily apparent. The base may be infirm. Generally, integrity is assumed slowly degraded. One expects old bridges, unless well maintained, to develop defects. Concepts and belief systems are similar in the abstract. Old ruins arouse curiosity, sometimes venerated, but are rarely restored. The long dead stay dead, but the less recently deceased are sometimes erroneously resurrected or preserved in stagnation. The Christian religion, as opposed to its faith, has either long waned or mutated, despite the best efforts of its shrinking adherents in the western world. The rational is not always heeded, nor should be, in most important human endeavors. However, a time does come to move on. Those left behind become as either dinosaurs or the walking dead. The rational need not necessarily succeed the irrational. The world view created by economics is a prime example, else a gold standard would still be necessary. The dollar has value because it is accepted to have value in a shared economic verbal world. If this situation were to change drastically, the result would be economic collapse even were nothing else to change (impossible). One might be tempted to question the exact rationality involved, and ponder its predominance in many tragic anti-natural human affairs, like wars and purges.

vi. For those whom find religion unnecessary and faith oppressive, its institutions are a weight to be eliminated. Action and thought dictated by a higher power is distasteful and offensive. Our own errors are most highly prized. However, the greater herd appears to require some imposed order, or semblance, in their collective view of the world. The shared beliefs bring comfort by maintaining shared concepts, value systems, and a sense of community. Those creeds most codified are attributed metaphysically or to some god. The moral follow those dictates willingly or not. If one ceases to believe for whatever reason, predominate cultural values may be substituted to fill the void. The herd requires guidance, and will always look for any god or myth to fill that need. Once God died, the herd just grasped a new deity to venerate. The resultant dictates may even have the same trappings as religion, only less mystical and more base. Eventually, the emergent value systems will create their own mythical justifications and moral codes. In the case of the machine, value systems based on efficiency are beget for preservation and propagation. Standards and common techniques are necessary for the most efficient and smoothest operation. The resultant improvement is called progress, but for its own sake. Progress therefore became mythological over time. Its associated morality is extreme efficiency requiring maximum advantage in all things, including those aspects of life not necessarily served best by efficiency. Hence, various aspects of human existence compete for maximum advantage, and the weakest elements in this scheme lose. Unfortunately, no distinction is made between the natural and anti-natural, perhaps less so than is the case for religious morality. Objectively speaking, one might even be tempted to recognize religion as less anti-natural and harmful than progress. At least religion is based on tradition and not completely obsessed with technical efficiency. Religion is venerable and slowly withering away in its power and influence to varying degree. Progress is more akin to suicide by chocking to death on one's own waste. Standing solemnly, we expect the elderly to die. Hence, the irrational is orders of rank higher than the hyper-rational. Of course, this analysis says nothing concerning right nor wrong. The herd needs god(s).
Of course, some religious types make annoying attempts at preserving their beliefs and morality in the face of progress, which will inevitably trample and crush that which became culturally terminal long before. One might be tempted to hail this situation as well and good. Indeed, the individualistic faith does beat the herd faith, which nurtures weakness and decadence, but the enemy of one's enemy is not necessarily one's friend. The hopes of certain western philosophers, like Nietzsche, based upon the immoral superseding decadent Christian morality, have unfortunately proven unfounded. The amoral has instead coopted the immoral, and gained ascendancy, thus apparently leaving nothing left against which to fight. Wasting time and energy with ghosts, the real threat remains unseen and even embraced by those offended by dead Christian values. Perhaps progress would be a better target...
Life without God only becomes meaningless for peasants and the weak minded. Dostoevski correctly predicted the consequences for Russia, but developed countries have suffered far less by the general abandonment of Christianity in deed (if not word). Cultures have not evolved at equal rates, and that which is best or necessary for one society may prove an unmitigated disaster for another. Many in the west fail to realize these differences, and attempt to impose their value systems for supposedly universal maximum advantage by economic pressures and even militaristic means. The circular, flawed and empty wheel-within-wheels connections which are tenuously woven to justify these actions are at best technical morality parasitically feeding upon any available value system for maximum advantage in all things. Efficiencies do compete. However, their blind spot lies within the inability to recognize that some aspects of life are inherently inefficient. Past errors sometimes lay groundwork for major advances. Indeed, scientific thought did manage to emerge from the darkness by its own challenges to superstition and ridiculous mysticism. A backlash may sometimes initiate events fortuitous as an avalanche which unearths a vein of gold. One must take care it does not become pyrite. Christianity denied a bad or good conscience by attributing such sentiments to a higher power. Consciousness was brought to light by scientific inquiry which then attempted to incorrectly quantify it. Which error is worse? Both restrict personal developing by demanding a rationale for everything, which only denies irrationality. The original sin is the denial of the world. Even an old religion hating atheist might be tempted to question the wisdom of an entirely rational world with its inherent logical flaws. The enemy of one's enemy is not necessarily a friend. At least the old superstitions have some basis in tradition, and point toward the future. The new deliverance is equally false, but cannot even conceive a future except through fantasy and speculation. The utopias envisioned by the totalitarian regimes of the 20th century became pure hells for all engulfed by their false belief in rational progress and perfection. Hence, the rational does not quite dare go so far again as blatantly, instead opting for a mediocre balancing act called market capitalism. A religion is many orders of rank over base political dogma and propaganda. The external and internal are separated with the individual caught in the break. However, one can always choose not to believe. In a technological society, very few can afford the sacrifice and energy required to constantly swim against the current. It becomes so much easier to simply go wherever the river may lead. After all, one could always be wrong since any contrary gut instincts are just irrational speculation. Although conferring some short term benefits, the anti-natural will never prove ultimately good in the long run. One can govern actions and resist animalistic impulses through other means than fear of moral sanctions or punishment. Good and evil are matters of perspective, never absolutes, and defined from above or below for the benefit of tools. At least the irrational may be easily discounted...
The Christian faith, through its own decadence, spawned the mythical concept of progress by the rational backlash against its most ridiculous and unyielding tenants. Conflict is often conception. Perhaps, the rational will produce its successor though the same mechanisms.
vii. Scientific intuition is recognized to exist and considered some import in scientific education and pedagogy, but significant if and only if proven correct by quantified means. As all mathematics are not computational, some physical phenomena may not be quantified. An important connection may be missed or remain entirely unseen by narrow reliance on formalism. Indeed, many physicists seem to realize the flaws inherent in reductive techniques by the failure to reconcile the relativistic and quantum worlds. Gravity is as elusive as it is noticeable. Fermat's Last Theorem was intuitively obvious, but centuries elapsed before a formal proof was developed. The effort was commendable, but not (strictly speaking) necessary. Rather than step over the mire for the green pastures beyond, physics might stagnate for centuries were this demand to halt advancement at some crucial point. Perhaps Fermat's Last Theorem was his last joke...
The intuitive has become fettered by formalism, and must be unchained to receive its due. Even an idle musing may lead somewhere important. Following an overgrown path, the introvert may stumble across something deeper, allowing the fathoming of dark pools and the mysteries contained within the mind. Understanding the nature of consciousness requires knowing nature, not the machine. Unlike the limited access afforded by the avenues of formalism, the intuitive is different for everyone and therefore unique. Even errors may be productive, rather than being just incorrect. The scientific mindset may require an occasional dose of the irrational. The math can come later. Of course, most intuitions and irrational hunches lead nowhere, but a few gems have shown their priceless value across the ages. One wonders whether we will see such genius again. High intelligent quotients mean nothing.
Science requires more than compartmentalized mathematical formulae or any singular approach. More abstract sciences have indeed suffered when mental effort is too tightly reigned. Alternate means may still have the same ultimate standards of proof, however some foundations may prove obstacles rather than building material. An example may be the positivist approach. Reduction may be useful in understanding greater spheres, but may become myopic when pushed to an extreme. The tool has become its own doctrine. Like using vise grips to pull teeth, some scientific thinkers demand reality conform to their world view and belief systems. Much like the adherents of any religion, some blind faith is required, only more rational. One may be tempted to ponder which extreme is ultimately worse. The balance scale is unable to weigh the anti-natural in any manifestations. Interesting science has outstripped its own philosophies which more than bridle it. Eventually phenomena becomes increasingly bizarre because the intuitive is partly guided by what one wishes to see. Believing pervasive cultural myths, such as progress, which promotes its own errors of absolute rationality, some scientists would rather cling to such notions in the face of everything. The obsessive is never healthy. Why else would revolutions in science be so resisted?
(Arthur C.) Clarke's Law roughly states that when an elder established scientist states something is impossible, the pronouncement will probably be proven (at least partly) incorrect. Scientific thought is subject to some rigidity, which will ultimately prove unhelpful where the technical surpasses science. One might develop better ways to probe the nature of reality, but what matter if no one understands its significance. Never forget that atomic bombs where once popularly thought nothing more than a big explosion. The public will generally be farther behind the scientific community in the greater conceptions of reality. No practicing scientist would admit to a belief in absolute determinism, and reduction will someday be viewed equally invalid. The doctrine is too simplistic and smacks of wishful anthropomorphizing. Of course, ascribing human characteristics or rather an ideal to natural phenomena is nothing new. The modern age is more abstract, and less inclined toward concrete idols. Its hollowness is muffled by deeper, more universal if not absolute concepts, rather than debatable religious tenants. The mathematical sciences and techniques have the advantage of general automatic acceptance by anyone educated to understand the implications. It becomes far easier to extend the resultant world view through projections upon every aspect of existence and reality. The reverberations may be felt across all levels of human society, culture and even individual personality. The new savior is sterile, cold, and less comforting to a species which largely appears to require faith. Looking toward the future may require narcotics for survival of the herd. The individual is expendable in these considerations. For this herd drive, some will adopt decadent or even nihilistic tendencies. The educated are particularly susceptible. Sheer exposure levels insure all are infected by the dictates of dogma. Some more or less so. The open mind is a myth and a lie. Hence, certain supposed scientific truths may be among the greatest errors. By dogmatically embracing incorrect comparisons and spectra, the scientist serves ignorance rather than knowledge.

1996 - January 1, 2001

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Conflicting Spectra? (Part 2)

iii. Common errors and flaws resides within false notions concerning permanence. In a sense, these errors may be necessary for species preservation. Else stability, and even civilization, would seem futile. The present is the only definite experience, but fleeting and gone before we may often contemplate its significance. Time was not always so regimented. One may not always trust memory. Symbolic civilization dulls recall. The future is hidden. The past always appears through different eyes. The strongest influences appear eternal. Being less crucial for the development of civilization, the concrete overshadows the abstract. In a technological society, one is consumed by the present. Contemplation becomes rare or actually unwelcome to those adapted to hyper-stimulated states. Dreams are often interrupted by the alarm clock. Did past ages have their sleep so broken? The present molds all into its fabric, which shapes and breaks eternal notions. Advancement is narrowed to progress. Fundamental changes occur far more slowly. The dedication required to oversee true advancement would be unwelcome for most. Obligations beyond the immediate are considered irrelevant in a world beyond such quaint notions as beyond good and evil. Our society suddenly thrust under the depths of religious piety would drown. The only alternative to out-dated medieval moralities for establishing collective responsibility is a social revolution.

iv. The anti-natural kills slowly or otherwise by ignoring or discounting nature. Although possibly an error, it should not be confused with ignorance. The product of the human intellect, the anti-natural is the spawn of decadent genius or confusion. A march to the sea is only natural for lemmings. Supposedly higher notions and ideals make men rodents. The denial of life is anti-natural. The denial of death is anti-natural. Reaffirmation requires accepting certainties, including the distasteful. Certain paths have little room. One does not jump best in the dark or over unseen barriers. Skewed from a central balance, valuations become uneven. Life becomes either discounted or obsessed over in excessive attention to details. An eternal soul becomes an excuse for inaction. The next world will be better. Reality has some constant components, but much besides also matters. Imposed value systems, long past their prime, will never reach their initial peak where their adoption appeared necessary. Fanaticism mellows with age. Moral systems are requirements of custom which preserve the community through demanding adherence and obedience. Often the original cause is long past, but discipline requires the maintenance of morality, possibly in homage to the community. Not surprisingly, some will fail to see the point, or create new customs to establish their power. Whether reform or regression, a counter influence will always demand at least some alteration. The base or beginning always fades behind in the mist, and partially lost to the mythical. The beginning becomes far different than its end, and even more anti-natural...

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Conflicting Spectra? (Part 1)

Draft 4.0

i. Discerning truth may often prove a matter of discovering and discerning perception. A periodic re-evaluation of our perceptual world may be necessary to unearth the realities buried beneath the apparent world. Once excavated, dirt must be moved somewhere. As a result, new values appear and decline. Degeneration, both actual and metaphorical, occurs with increasing entropy.[1] Static states decay and eventually crumble. Even in decline, new niches always appear to be exploited. Opportunistic elements will therefore attempt the seizure of advantage and consolidation of power along these new avenues. Easy targets are struck first, setting an example, thereby creating perceived power. Politics is settling such conflicts mostly through peaceful means. Hostility, the path of least resistance, is easy to harness, but can become uncontrollable. A simmer is better than a boil. Aggression must find relatively harmless means of release. The resultant great spectacle presents vicarious means of escape to pacify the population. Some personality types might occasionally become dissatisfied, or even break out, which gives the spectacle fresh diversions for the masses. Even failure is a success. Revolt becomes a diversion, and revenge impossible. Like the phoenix, the destroyed will always arise again to be struck down a thousand times if need be.
Instincts may always be cultivated in populations as well as individuals. Social constructs are partially instinctual, but may be confused with others mimicking their form. A shadow may arise across the collective body by feeding upon the malice and frustration internalized within each individual comprising the mob. Power is through reinforcement, mutually modeling and compelling thought and deed. The desire exists, and everything becomes possible. Of course, the mob may only remain agitated for so long before succumbing to exhaustion. Agitation may be utilized for less destructive degrees or purposes. By demanding relatively smaller emotional investment or effort, a lesser level may be maintained for longer periods of time. Stress is an effect. Indeed, if properly managed, only agitation itself is required, or wanted, for maintenance of the status quo. Goals or enemies must be directed along accepted and appropriate channels. The direction of the herd may change, but never to an extreme. Too much cultural inertia exists, thus risking disaster if the wheel is jerked too suddenly. Passion over non-issues may allow more pressing concerns to be unnoticed, which benefits the power structure. Pressure points must be relieved of stress, and best efficiently. Hence, the skilled employ techniques to shape the attitudes of themselves and others. Often particulars are not important. Democrats and Republicans are not fundamentally different, but are portrayed as false spectral extremes for maximum advantage in all things. All interests are supposedly represented. Hence, one may not claim to be oppressed, rather simply ignored, discounted or trivialized if dissenting viewpoints do not find mass media outlets in a capitalist system. Lowest common denominators are always lukewarm. Any real threats are exploited for maximum advantage. The rebel is alive. Revolt is dead. Eventually competing alternatives are not even formulated because it becomes nothing but hollow academic talk. Eventually the static becomes stagnant and decays. Hence the mob returns and the extremes meet.

ii. Causal and effectual relationships are not always readily apparent. Order may be confused and entangled with false deductive reasoning. Over the development of human thought, many different schemes have been called upon for explanation. Only relatively recently has the rational been slowly pressed into service. Order of occurrence, how and why, may be debatable, and justified as opposed to the supernatural and metaphysical. Meaning is a human definition sometimes clouding fact. No reasonable scientist will argue the chemical compositions of common household substances, but may endlessly debate possible consumer hazards. Hence, only the reproducible is accepted as proof. The resultant situation is both harmful and beneficial according to application. It may not be any other way. Only common similarities identified and united by language enable identification with past experience and education. Intuition becomes discounted. Emotion need not cloud every concern; technique need not be sterile. Often a mask of one is mistaken for the other. Few real constants exist, just a succession toward the future. The western mind is focused upon the present, and views the world accordingly. Judgements are similarly guided. The world changes and memories of the past fade with time and become distorted. Memory is always fluid, and often temporally nonlinear. Likewise, even the future has an effective end. The universe may continue to expand when the last stars have died, but will mean nothing against a backdrop of nothing. Any contrary perspective will be irrelevant, but not before. Even error may be grand, even sublime for a time, before outliving its time. The democratic mythology is among the most notable.
False association results from erroneous causality. Attributable to belief, hope or acceptance, two unlike things are ascribed a higher common meaning. One is often called upon to uphold common myths and it is usually easier to go with the flow. One must be persuaded, rather than convinced, when personally lacking the time or inclination to explore every issue facing society. Ideologically consistent remedies always fail to grasp the true state of the world. The ideal is failure. Economic difficulties have often occurred due to widespread failure to account the world. Although often popularly attributed as a cause, the 1929 stock market crashed as a result of a slowing world economy hampered by a trade war. Popular, simplified and false conclusions spread outward, like the spider web pattern on a broken windshield. The ramifications are not always appreciated, or even readily apparent. Trends develop through many cross currents, some far below the surface. Yet the wind is most noticed.

[1] Entropy, the level of disorder in a system, will always be used in this mixed sense when appropriate. Perhaps, the term may relate a non-quantified associated phenomena, but cannot be proven so by definition. The basic problem being nothing may exist beyond when proof is narrow, being necessary for technical requirements. Of course, without it, one has astrology. Perhaps the intuitive could be tested...

[2] Sometimes for propaganda purposes...

Monday, October 18, 2004

Fallujah. Winning hearts and minds #2. Posted by Hello

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Flag draped coffins. What Bush doesn't want you to see #1. Posted by Hello

Saturday, October 16, 2004

On Skewed Progressions (Part 3)

v. Natural v. Anti-Natural Cultural Evolutions
Cultural evolution is not a single path. Including dead-ends, many different routes and eventualities may exist. For example, regressions may be coupled with lateral advances called progress. The advocates of progress may only offer proof-by-example because it has no actual basis in reality. Yet, progress is still swallowed hook, line and sinker even by those who should know better, were their instincts not blunted by specialist mediocrity. Emphasis and value are important factors over which much blood has flowed. Anti-natural cultural evolution may sometimes conflict and adversely impact individual or even species development. The natural processes are slower than those supposed artificial avenues propagated by ideologies, which will produce, as side-effects, decadence and nihilism. Degeneration will occur by conflicting natural and anti-natural cultural forces. Unhealthy cultures have previously been replaced, but electronic communication networks bring the clash to many levels different from direct physical contact. The resultant verbal confrontation may intensify the conflict beyond hitherto possible extremes. Cold War propaganda could have culminated in a nuclear exchange. Compared to the relatively guarded language of diplomatic dispatches, propaganda may create a verbal world where even surviving a nuclear war is seen as possible through de-humanizing the opposition and portraying threats in anti-natural terms. The nihilism evoked is entirely unsurprising when citizens are faced with the constant possibility of imminent destruction at all times. The mass psychology is poorly understood. Being part of the system, the experts are themselves affected by its mechanisms and social dynamics. No system may be entirely explained and fathomed by one of its own components. Even further removed from reality, the near future may spawn even larger difficulties. A world unified by the dollar will by definition have no external enemies. All threats will be internal. A new broad, more abstract and anti-natural, enemy will emerge for public consumption. Although many will try, nothing internal will surpass its system. Even its indicators will be different than those currently utilized for maximum advantage, like a convenient foreign scapegoat such as North Korea, Iraq or Libya. The propagated menace must confront everyone, by sinking to the lowest possible level, thus promoting even world-wide unity. For good or ill, those power structures which gain ascendancy by manufacturing a viable foe to all nations will influence the history of the world. One could always seize the moment and become that enemy. The power conferred would be worth it. A low mean abundance provides opportunities to be exploited for maximum advantage. Even when undermining this system, rather than natural balance, efficiency must still be the prime motivator. Uncontrollable by anyone, the path of least resistance will deliver all. Positive results will produce their yield. Technique is the safest bet, but not necessarily the truly optimal avenue for natural cultural evolution. Technology, which allows the human animal to better and effectively interact with the natural rather than dominate it, need not necessarily skew species development. In any conflict, nature will ultimately win the battle. Our definitions require a renewal, thus clearly separating the natural and anti-natural in our minds.

vi. On Skewed Definitions:
The ostensible purpose concerning the process of definition is equation and reduction to unity. Communication and language could not exist without this mechanism for producing commonality. Requiring a definition for comparison, even apparent orders of rank are secondary considerations. Value defines worth. Power follows. Rigidity is initiated by the powerful, thereby maintaining their grip on definition by establishing convention. The means have varied over time and societies. The modern American culture utilizes the efficient approach of socialization, which reduces the necessity of outright autocratic edicts. Hence, the myth of freedom is maintained while establishing the collective unity which debases it. Rejection often leads to either natural or anti-natural cultural evolution, including a synthesis of both possibilities. Hence, the myth of freedom is maintained by change and new repetitive cycles within the social scheme. As long as the myth of progress defines the direction downward as being onward, even regression suffices. Definitions remain static. Hence, new words are coined. The world turns despite our best efforts to the contrary.
Definitions involve imagery. Translated concepts are lost from the original. A periodic renewal is essential to possess meaning. Eventually reaching mythic proportions, codification will only occur for the strongest definitions. Nobody would call freedom a bad thing, but few could explain why. Definition becomes skewed by lacking any outward contrast or comparison. Freedom means little until compared with other situations. A prisoner is still a prisoner. Fundamentals have become absolutes. Squandered energy takes many forms. A primary cause is the confusion between causal and effectual relationships spawned. The lack of outside reference points is a cause. The mentalities produced have no other function except to be used, exploited and discarded. It matters little which puppet reigns supreme. All have their uses. Original thoughts are still worded by common definitions, which may be exploited for maximum advantage. Confusion may result, but such instances have their uses by instilling a supposed need for leadership. Complexity is difficult, but can be faked to appear ideologically consistent. The world is created, not just observed. Perceptions are important for creating common links. Stagnation is a human trait which may interfere with true cultural evolution, but will prove useful for someone even by provoking the foulest declines.
The vilest lies may be contained and concealed within the dearest truths. Conflict occurs when the natural and anti-natural collide. Ultimately, the natural world will reign once the anti-natural becomes unsustainable. However, systemic demise might not be readily recognized due to the lack of external references. A dead system of thought is not the same as a rotting corpse. The civilization will be too caught up in behavior considered normal by default. The end will be stagnant and possibly fatal. This current age has never been seen before, which implies its supersession will be most uncertain. Those elements least firmly grounded will suffer the worst fates. Skewing all definitions contrary to technique, calculations only define the simplistic. The world is not always rational or illogical. Coping requires a mix. The past is dead. Its philosophical basis should not outlive its time. Unfortunately, the dead impact the present through eternal notions which were never applied and certainly do not belong in the present age. Our views concerning reality are skewed and should be corrected. Self-imposed limitations should be discarded to prevent the skewing of definitions for the maximum advantage of static societal forces. Of course, one requires a starting reference point, but that requirement would be generally different for each individual. Otherwise, man becomes a machine, inferior to the mechanical which is naturally efficient and skewed...
1996 - January 1, 2001

Friday, October 15, 2004

On Skewed Progressions (Part 2)

iii. Affirmation v. Negation:
Specialists may only establish their narrow subjects through its own angle. Hence, the specialist affirms his own specialty. Outsiders may not tread through the private inner-sanctuary, thus conferring a lame technical mysticism over (an often boring) subject. Constructive criticism is also stifled by a natural reluctance to rock the proverbial boat and thereby endanger perceived relevance or continued funding. Perspective is mostly lacking. The specialist never steps back and attempts to comprehend the greater whole. Reason cannot always tame the unreasonable. The natural herd response for protecting territory manifests itself professionally. On a personal level, the specialist feels needed and important, if only within one small skill or ability, therefore equal to anyone else. Only technical morality means anything. Larger considerations are irrelevant. The strong lure is assured and rewarded with money. The specialist is affirmed. Tangible logic reinforces the specialist mentality via larger paychecks unto obsolescence. No distinction exists between the concrete and abstract, which allows capital its power. A wrong tool must be avoided for maximum efficiency. Any complementary relationships are missed by this scheme. Accidents and failures are less likely. Progress is tunnel vision. Only absolutes float to the surface through the obscuring muck. The universe is not so simplistically regarded, thus skewing any observations through the supplied lenses. Contradiction even exists logically. Choice is more than a coping mechanism for facilitating technical projects. Weakness may impede, or prove a strength when wisely compensated. True discipline discards rigidity. A rejection need not be a negation, whereas acceptance is not affirmation. The wholesale is usually overkill. Conditioned behavior should be acknowledged for true consciousness concerning one's place in the universe. The alternative is akin to the life of a dreaming veal.

iv. Development v. Maintenance:
Balance is not a simple nor uniform consideration. Even over apparently irrelevant inconsistencies, basic necessities may vary. The key determinant is not always obvious for any given solution. Progress guarantees consequences are ignored to the fullest possible extent in advance. Although locally variant, ignorance pervades everywhere. A deluge of data drowns all. The contrary espousals are amusing in their amazing claims. If the internet brings people together then why is it populated by the depressed and perverted? Physical isolation produces decadence. Now we see wistful hopes of the computer world being real. Now matter the size of the program, the magic box is no more alive than sand. For example, the complete set of irrational numbers may never be realized in their entirety, because the first such number will itself never end. Rather, a necessary shortcut allows exploring their general properties as a subset of all real numbers. A higher concept must define the specific. The computer is only capable of calculation. The anti-natural will prevail by insisting upon the opposite. In favoring soft decadent instincts which lead downward, the hard vibrant will be ignored. Stasis is a degenerate state. In this verbal world, escapist pursuits help achieve an insulation from reality through excessive dreaming. Expression ceases to have meaning. The distinction between reality and fantasy is impossible to determine without relative perspective. Identical acts may possess situational meaning. The burning of churches in Spain and the U.S. have totally different significance. Observation almost never proves long lasting before a general inference is made. Adaptive skills are blunted. Depending upon the actual mean point rather than the perceived, balance cannot ignore reality. The world may be inhabited by those believing the opposite but usually not for long. The skew may be exploited by opportunists for maximum advantage in all things. Unless grasped in a death-grip by those who must believe it, thin illusions are easily dispelled by harsh reality. Leading nowhere through a huge expenditure of energy, development only supports maintenance. One systemic efficiency criteria may not be the same as for other competing schemes. Quality has been overrun by quantity. Impacts are only mitigated for short-term consideration. All directions warrant thought. Backwards is sometimes necessary. Cultural evolution needs resumption. Unlike other species, humanity has greater choices, thus a periodic re-evaluation of base assumptions is required. Were it not for stagnation, revolutions would be unnecessary.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

On Skewed Progressions (Part 1)

A Biased Argument

Draft 5.0

i. Classical v. Romantic Thought:
For purposes of this discussion, classical thought processes will pertain to the concrete, rational, technical, deductive and logical modes of reasoning. Romantic thought modes, including the artistic and spiritual, are more abstract. Popular positivist sentiment has promoted classical thinking over the romantic. The imbalance produced, or skewness, is attributable to cultural and societal forces which demand economic considerations are the only valid viewpoint. Both Capitalism and Marxism suffer from this defect. As a result, the abstract is given more leeway. Nobody cares about impure thoughts, only deeds. For mass-culture, classical ascendancy over the romantic is inevitable. The immediate overrides the intellectual as the concrete supplants the abstract. The resultant skewed perspective creates a climate where solutions to pressing problems may remain unseen. All could pay the price for it. Indeed, the scientific method has superseded science itself. Although a positivist, Werner Heisenberg believed acceptance of General Relativity[1] and Quantum Mechanics would reverse this disparity albeit through reductionism. However, the population has no real concept of these extremes of physical phenomena. Star Trek does not educate. Even many scientists never study such mathematically rigorous topics. The difficult philosophical implications are not esteemed over myths like progress, and hence have no influence over the general culture and society. Even scientists ignore the philosophy, which has become divorced from the considerations of practical science. Philosophy has become entirely esoteric. Only results pay the bills and ensure continued funding. Adversely creating very myopic viewpoints, this skew may confirm the worst fears concerning progress. For instance, radioactive decay chains and deadly isotopic products will persist for millions of years. Policy is usually unable to extend its grasp beyond an insignificant five years. These issues are disconcerting for a culture obsessed with the eternal present, and all solutions are rendered impotent as a consequence. Future generations will condemn us for it. Comfort has very little place in nature. While being a primary human concern which motivates the capacity for ignoring many important realities, comfort may be considered a sign of decadent sentience. The romantic might help direct human thought toward more long range perspectives rather than its current degeneration into decadence and nihilism. Most religions, obsessed with death, are equally guilty by seeding the soil for the current reality. However, their failures were the result of ignorance rather than a matter of choice. Art has become a statement against the world. The classical negation of the romantic is directly responsible for many important complementary relationships to be missed. Therefore, many causal and effectual linkages remain hidden behind skewed points-of-view, and cultural evolution stagnates in a mediocre quagmire. The immediate simply cannot be regarded eternal with nonexistent consequences. Eventually, the world will choke on the divergence.

ii. Science v. The Scientific Method:
Science is a complicated process for answering why? The answer is not often simple or even possible to determine. Systemic complexity, fundamental uncertainty relationships, and even sentimentality hinder investigation. Contrary to classical expectations, no answer can be a very profound answer. The non-existence of an ether medium for electromagnetic wave propagation is a case in point. The failed experiment of Michelson and Morley, in the 1880s, was one of the most important realizations in the history of science. A disappointment lead to the development of relativistic and quantum theories. Some roads lead to surprising places. Other paths are dangerous. Demands for efficiency may create a product before its implications may be realized. The atomic bomb, with roots in the investigations of the behavior of clouds, springs to mind as an extreme case. Was it inevitable? Motivators are not always rational, or (worse) all-too-rational. Resources are squandered by a system with little regard for long range and flexible planning. Comfort and security are poor benchmarks. During economic downturns, increased leisure time may be utilized to demonstrate the supposed contentment of the worker whose idleness is not a virtue. Otherwise idleness is a bad thing. Nothing is said regarding any other issue. The technical determines value with accounting tools and concepts. Waste is inefficient. The scientist has been supplanted by his own method, and reduced to supporting roles. This situation was inevitable. Divergent smaller research programs would be detrimental for progress, which must visibly slog forward. Even though most important discoveries have been made on a small budget, bigger is esteemed better. Cookie cutter science is a cultural disease infecting establishment science via its particular contact vectors. Specifics are favored over the general. No great projects are undertaken, rather duplicating minutiae. Hence, we search for cures rather than root causes. The best work is specific. Major breakthroughs are ceasing. In this verbal world, the creative spark can be detrimental except when directed toward designated domains. The specialist is obsessed from a professional standpoint, by technical necessity, with a very narrow range. Little is seen beyond. This system produces bright dullards whom only comprehend their narrow roles. All become good Americans. Although the actual science is independent, scientific establishments are a product of their environment. Some remarkable work may still emerge. However, under the increasingly narrow confines determined by funding constraints, directed by policy,[2] important and necessary scientific break-throughs are less likely to occur. Creativity is stifled. Money rules everything. Occasionally, one hears some lament concerning the decline of genius (usually from those squelching it). Rather than something innate, the regression is the result of an environment which does not support or encourage it. Only short gains may be realized before finally bending to the dictates of technical necessity. Rationalizations aside, calculations are only a small part of the whole. Lest advancement be halted by progress, the 19th Century positivist mindset should finally be discarded. By eliminating context and individualistic perception, quantitative reductionism would reduce all to ultra-defined and fragmentary meaningless. Every experience may not be adequately described by mathematics, or any other language...
[1] The geometric theory of gravitation developed by Albert Einstein concerning the very large, whereas quantum theory involves the very small. The two theories are also incompatible in important respects.
[2] A useful subject best studied for any effective utilization and even manipulation of any system for maximum advantage.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Spanish Civil War poster #7. Posted by Hello

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Spanish Civil War poster #6. Posted by Hello

Monday, October 11, 2004

Tiennamen Square

Today's revolutionaries are tomorrow's reactionaries. Posted by Hello

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Old Pals: Donald Rumsfeld & Saddam Hussein 1983. Posted by Hello

Saturday, October 09, 2004

Spanish Civil War poster # 5. Posted by Hello

Friday, October 08, 2004

On Religion

Draft 3.0

Perhaps the natural price of sentience, the human animal is willingly capable of anti-natural behaviors. Our rationality has an inevitable by-product, which must exist to some extent, but a decadent environment has nurtured these tendencies in a fertile soil. The result has been an increasing overall alienation in industrial societies. The individual becomes disconnected and isolated. Suicide is the extreme end result. Many opt for slower paths to the same destination. Rationality may compose an element fully integrated with existence, but does not extend in all directions. Categorization is never fully realizable. However, decadent schemes ignore the actual in favor of delusions of rationality. A fit is imposed, while not actually existing, thus leading to outright conflicts within the framework of reality. Inappropriate virtues are touted. A root error, leading to incorrect prioritization, concerns misplaced notions concerning duration. Patterns are seen where none exists. The true flows and textures of an often rotten existence are missed. A random smudge becomes idolized while true wonders pass us by in the fast lane. A complex series may produce a result unlike any subset. Although the decadent values the stupid opinions of all, perspective is not necessarily valid. Nobody wants to hear it, yet most keep flapping their lips in an endless tirade which seems to validate their existence while proving absolutely nothing. The rational seeks a mean value even in those cases which does not actually fit any statistical pattern or distribution. The rational is a very practical tool for large linear problems like organizations and logistics, and builds civilizations by these means. However, the rational never seems to be set aside except through decadent backlash mechanisms. A hammer is not always necessary. Strictly positivist beliefs should have been a passing fad, but still exists within our economic and governmental systems. Anything not quantifiable becomes very difficult to fathom by a society so limited. Everything has a price, which means nothing. The only morality existent becomes the exploitation of all things to maximum advantage. Our new insanities are harsher than anything hitherto existent, not just discovered. No society has ever previously starved itself for fashion. Although masked by consumer credit card debt, life savings are spent on frivolities. Repressed by fear and dwelling upon minor insecurities, drugs are the preferred means of enabling social skills. Even religion is better than progress. At least, a decadent slave religion acknowledges a certain lack of freedom, rather than really pathetic rebellion. Religion has been superseded along with its repressive traits. Although, this author fully admits a relatively high degree of prejudice regarding organized religion, and finds spirituality an un-relatable concept, it must be fully admitted to be orders of rank higher than sterile rationality. At least the bible is good literature. The rational extreme is best set aside by any possible means. Of course, the nihilistic attitude spawned may be as eventually devastating. The brink may be avoided by discarding the rational extreme quickly. The remaining institutions may be dealt with shortly thereafter...

For many whom do not require faith for sustaining their existence, religious institutions are a onerous weight which must be removed or even destroyed. The psychological experience of spirituality is akin to concrete shoes. Many lesson the impact of organized faith by either backlash or apathy against anything preached. If those idiots believe such garbage, it is thought, then everything for which they even remotely stand is worthless. Hostility is a powerful driving force. Apathy allows one to ignore it. A higher power is little concern. One may go to the occasional church ceremony feeling stifled and resentful, or simply regard it as a chore like doing laundry. Actions may be dictated, but never the thoughts of a truly free mind where nothing is forbidden and everything permitted. Unfortunately, for those worshiping progress, economics appears the mediocre substitute for religion. The sheep are exploited for maximum, rather than moral advantage. Since this picture will never change, religion is the lesser evil for the masses. Despite the glitter of consumerist society, religion is simply less stifling. Besides, the lessening of institutional religious power in the western world has been steadily occurring for over a century and will not be regained on the old levels. The days of religious dominance are ending. Decadent Christianity only fragments. Islam and Judaism are no danger, being concerned with obedience rather than meekness, but one cannot expect the miraculous. The herd will someday wither away, but the process is still uncertain and may be mitigated. God is not dead, just changed form with the world, and will never return in a previous guise. However, one can pretend otherwise for the edification of idiots...

Of course, this new god need not be the old decadent Christian deity, being the main reason progress was accepted as liege in the first place. Some myths are better than others. However, herd animals crave the false security of the familiar, therefore the mask must be the same. Perhaps, the relevant matter concerns faith, but religion does appear a better way of instilling herd unity than the mechanisms of progress. On the other hand, religion leaves a bad taste in the mouth, which deserves supersession in a form other than progress. Everything nauseating becomes a matter of degree. The old worn arguments, which states that without God, life is meaningless is entirely valid for peasants. The 19th century Nihilists are a primary example which utilized this rationalization for destructive ends, because existence had become meaningless in this scheme. Hence, their opponents in turn pointed to their actions as the philosophical necessity for the existence of god. Both circular wheels-within-wheels arguments discards any consideration of individual conscience concerning thought and deed. The external and internal are completely partitioned by anti-natural beliefs. Morality is only necessary for those either disconnected with reality or ignorant peasants. One need only look around the North American continent for examples. A hillbilly is not the same as a suburbanite. A sufficiently advanced personality, with a firm grounding in reality, is not governed by weakness. The issue becomes conscience, thereby moving beyond good and evil. Some modern psychologists, among others, propagate stagnation by classifying everything beyond a certain mean as abnormal. Anti-social is traded for immoral, still keeping the herd in line, only far more mediocre. O' how very little truly ever changes...

The Christian religion, through its own decadence, spawned its successor progress. Religion was no longer capable of filling a void in many lives. Christianity is still an institution in the west, but real faith is disappearing. Capitalists, Marxists and eventually Christians alike seized upon progress as the remedy for all their ills. Instead, only a new disease produced more. Perhaps, humanity is not so far above the great apes as we would like to believe...

1996 - January 1, 2001

Thursday, October 07, 2004

The lights are on, but no one is home. Posted by Hello

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Soviet World War 2 Poster #4. The Allies advance.  Posted by Hello

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Soviet World War 2 Poster #3. Posted by Hello

Monday, October 04, 2004

On Language and the Cartesian Partition

-Concerning the Myth of Progress.

Draft 4.0

i. On Language:

Languages evolve and change over time, thereby growing and accommodating culture by reflecting the prevalent mindsets. A certain lag, or less than absolute efficiency, will be evident and attributable to cultural inertia. Change is resisted. Scientific languages, including mathematics, are no exceptions. Quantum mechanics[1] was grudgingly accepted by strict positivists,[2] but only because the predictions were verified by observation. The classical world was proven a limit. Although, science has accepted the ramifications dispelling strictly deterministic positivist philosophies,[3] the transition has affected the general world view very little. All justifications and rationales regarding scientific emphasis are supported by evoking the positivist myth of progress. It represents a holdover from the industrial age. Past realities still have a far stronger foothold than often recognized. Progress must always be a possibility in any scientific endeavor. Over time, the meaning of progress unfolds and develops while retaining its old roots. The ramifications of an inorganic system acting life-like may prove disastrous. Rather only those qualities and quantities considered favorable by the edicts of progress are given any considerations. In this realm, a must always imply b for proper comprehension. Fortunately, logic does not always apply. Progress is for the truly atavistic.

ii. The Cartesian Partition,[4] first articulated by Rene Descartes in the time of Galileo, was the codification of a developing trend in Western European thought. The neutral observer was a powerful myth, not scientifically challenged for several hundred years. The 19th Century culmination arguably resulted in both Dialectic Materialism and modern Market Capitalism. The result of grand a implies b historical trends, dictated by progress, competing economic theories viewed certain historical trends as inevitable. Spawning totalitarian systems, some schools have proven disastrously wrong. Strangely enough, individuals always believe only others are molded. "I am free; everyone else is a consumer, a product and a drone, especially the guy at the next desk..." Hence, myths collide and conflict. A Cartesian Partition still exists between themselves and the world, but the divide is not real. Rather than admit themselves a product, their perceptions are directed by the myth of freedom and the standards of progress. Often manifesting decadent instincts, The dissociation requires inhabiting an artificial plane in any verbal world. New concepts have not been universally adopted. Influenced and even warped by competing interests, acceptance is rarely automatic. Cooperative necessity may bring together extremes for mutual benefit and maximum advantage. Thundering across the landscape and trampling everything in its path, the herd mentality moves accordingly. Supported by implied consent legitimized by doctrine, outdated rationales are utilized to justify direction. Society may indeed be influenced along these broad lines. The eternal state and religious beliefs fuel key arguments concerning law and morality. Revolution becomes more than unlawful, but contrary to GOD equated with COUNTRY. Even while celebrated in myth, revolt becomes the absolute worse sin. Money quantifies. Rigidity may prove advantageous for some sectors, but gradually drags down the whole by retarding advancement in favor of progress. A disconnected world contrary to reality is by definition neurotic. Deterministic beliefs are continually reinforced by economic uplift. The whole is never questioned. In this verbal world, symbolisms are utilized for displays of unity with the notions propagated by the myth of progress. We become consumers. Unquantifiable thought has been downgraded, being unpredictable and uncertain, as an inefficient means for advancement. A median must be chosen in setting standards. The peak is actually only limited by the requirements of the second law of thermodynamics. Of course, progress ignores this ceiling as well. Hence, the concrete moves into the abstract or verbal realm, thereby becoming subjectively malleable. In this world, no limits exist except those we choose to ignore. Focus becomes diffuse. Certain myths become eternal. Context is disregarded. Reality is poorly grasped through ideal lenses. Creativity is blunted. Once proven profitable, an art form stagnates by market forces. A surer bet pays more on average. No ground states exist. The ultimate product can not provide for itself. No matter how productive, reality will not long tolerate the indolent. Metaphorically or not, entropy will manifest itself in this system as decadence and decay. The end result will not even realize itself nihilistic. The Cartesian partition masks all things. It becomes virtually impossible to even contemplate, let alone discuss, the implications of living within a decaying technological system. The legacy will outlast its adherents. A new language needs learning. The apparent is not always truth.
[1] A mathematical theory of dynamic systems, concerning the behavior of sub-atomic particles, where variables specifying actions are abstract operators which happen to verify observation. Possibilities are represented by probabilities. Strictly speaking, a particle does not exist until observed, which in turn disturbs its behavior in uncertain ways...
[2] A philosophical doctrine contending that sense perception, albeit extended, are the only admissible basis of human knowledge and precise thought.
[3] Clockwork cause and effect, rather than probabilistic...
[4] The Cartesian Principle basically states that the observer is separate from the world.
1996 - January 1, 2001

Sunday, October 03, 2004

Your tax dollars at work in Iraq #1. Posted by Hello

Saturday, October 02, 2004

Spanish Civil War Poster 4. Posted by Hello

Friday, October 01, 2004

Pitch Man Osama

Osama is alive, well and hocking betel nuts in Pakistan. So much for winning hearts and minds. (See Asia Times Online link at right.) Posted by Hello