Friday, October 22, 2010

Total Perspective Vortex

My friend James and I have an ongoing discourse about logic, belief, time, and meaning, as well as how the actual universe can be sensed, remembered, interpreted and lived in without being sold an Intentionality bill of goods. I decided to draw this instead of explaining it.
Put yourself in the stick figures and imagine what you see as you look back at history and forward to the future.
How does it fit your perspective?
(N.F.U. is "net future usefulness", and this is drawn as a linear diagram, but the second half is really an all space filling 360° of possible random events. The point is that we SEE our past as a linear progression from a point, even though there were infinite possible directions for the line to follow at any time, as there are going into the future.) You may notice two things: it was done in a hurry, and I am not an artist.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Anger of the Honest

I just want to put in a plug here for something that just came to my attention:
Charles Hugh Smith's The Rot Within: Our Culture of Financial Fraud and the Anger of the Honest

If there is anything at all that describes me lately, I think it is that last phrase, "The Anger of the Honest".
If you're not pissed off, you're not paying attention. If you are paying attention and you're not pissed off, you're not being honest with yourself or your gut (there isn't a 'feeling' to the heart, but there is a second, active brain in your gut).

Dealing with insurance companies and health care has GOT to be the best example of this. We get hurt or sick, and we try to get help. We try to pay for it the best way we can with what is available. It is not our fault that the corporations are busy trying to suck every last breath out of each person who needs some service. An honest system would be to simply provide health care to people, which doesn't mean building buildings of glass and steel to house germs to make them worse than when they came in. It means connecting doctors to people so that people live healthier lives, not isolating the knowledge and experience behind piles of paperwork, bills, and elevators to nowhere.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Addendum conversation on "Because We Can"

Tommy said, You SOB. I'm supposed to be studying Accounting. I read this 4 times, and am not going to pretend I got all of it....

Lots of questions, sorry.

I think you are trying to confuse yourself more than you need to (by reading something written by a

>> "Particles may have certain properties which allow them to maintain existence >>(exclusion principles, quantum levels, spin, etc), and thus,
>> are useful to themselves as opposed to randomly decaying under the rule of >>entropy."

These particles are the essence of existence? Why would we perceive them? How does this relate to consciousness? Or, are these particles consciousness, and people are merely vessels that only perceive daily life on our dust collection planet w/in a tiny spectrum of light?

Start with this premise: Mathematical formulas cannot produce a random number.
Ergo, no amount of mathematics will tell us where anything came from that does not have some type of order.

The substance of the universe is not a vacuum, but a random quantum 'foam' of particles appearing and disappearing.
If one happens to pop into existence that is stable (i.e. useful to itself), then the existence of that bit of order will influence other bits of order to be stable also. From that order comes more order See Chaos Theory. Off the cuff, I would say these are the quarks, since they are least stable of fundamental particles, and mostly, they need other quarks to remain in existence.

It relates to consciousness almost not at all. That relationship is transferred all of the way up the chain of increasing order through evolved usefulness of living things, which comes after the evolved usefulness of matter itself. I think consciousness is an advanced state of useful memory tricks. It was useful to extend the physical senses by remembering that tigers hide in shadowy places, so remembering to walk around those places on the way to the water hole was an evolutionary advantage. The increasing complexity caused by DNA's affinity for glomming on more molecules led us to things like teaching children to avoid those places BEFORE they ever see a tiger, and then, Believing in the power of tigers to suddenly appear out of darkness, and then imagining the shape of a tiger in the patterns in the sky and following that shape to find other water holes. Communication glitches let people to believe that tigers created water holes, etc.

Existence cannot negate randomness, but it can harvest it and affect the overall randomness in a particular space, the harvesting of randomness to maintain matter creates a slight influx of energy/particles which I believe may be what is called "gravity". Outside of the local universe, the effect is minimal, and randomness is still random. Whether or not a Big Bang occurred and created a 'bubble' of some type would be a good question to ask, and whether there were multiple little bangs instead of one big one. The treatment of a purely random background as "ether" puts a different spin on the Hubble constant and whether the red shift of stars is from a Doppler effect or a slowing over distance and time due to an interaction with the ether.

Why would we build machines that can translate other spectra for us to see?

See answer below about space travel, but add a dose of curiosity.

Then, you said,
Isn't the TRANSITION of decay to existence the "net useful" part?In other words, isn't it at the tipping point of decay when all the action happens (destabilization, dessication, de-everything)?
>>("If the increasing complexity is greater than the action of random decay, the net >>result is a continued existence of a thing.")
Isn't our transition the useful part -- for individuals AND whole species w/in the bell curve?

The transition is where the usefulness is determined in the moment as living things convert either decay or randomness into living matter. That does not determine the total sum of net usefulness, however. Net usefulness (or net FUTURE usefulness) is the ratio between the total usefulness of the individual (including all offspring and influences over( let's say 6 sigma on the curve for fun)the period after death until their influence is lost in the noise...MINUS the total consumption that they caused. In other words, most species are 'measured' by their continued existence in a stable environment, and individuals long after they are dead. If the species is consuming their environment, they are net consumptive, and will eventually be extinct. Everything gets an equal chance to TRY to live, nothing is granted the RIGHT to live, except within the physically limited human concept of a society, where the rules are based on the social contract.
In this regard, were we sort of meant to find, extract, and burn all the carbon pockets, trash the planet, then act as interplanetary spores to provide the randomness effect on other dust collections?

Here's where the rubber meets the bottom of the prisoner's feet: There is no meaning to it. We simply came into existence as another living species, with the same opportunities to consume and exist (alongside many other hominid types at the time). The difference with homo sapiens lies in their illusion of everything having been caused by some intention, which is simply a projection of human beliefs onto the natural world. This is the parasitic part of Intention: it convinces us of two things: first, that the things we do were intended, and second, that things done not by us must have been intended also. Rarely is the first as true as we believe, and even more rare is the second. The more we think, the more we think we have intentions and the more 'meaning' we find in everything, which leads to our mistaken belief that the smarter we are, the less we can be fooled.

I have to separate the following into two questions:
If not, then why do humans have a persistent archetypal fantasy to fly -- that lead us all the way to outer space?

I think this is simply the desire to accumulate 'more'...a natural tendency of all animals. The difference is that humans managed to eliminate their predators and diseases, and also find much more energy than we could handle wisely.

-- wasn't this part of the motivator of internal combustion and not electric motors, knowing that carbon held more potential energy (rooted archetypically -- not so randomly)?

Tough part (answering with my typical Bullshit): yes and no. The major motivator to internal combustion was marketing and profit. People were more conservative by nature in those days, and the electrics were quiet, limited to the elite by expense, and more reliable. The hand crank starter kept women from the IC engine cars until the electric starter was invented. By then, Freudian marketing techniques were employed to make quick work of the "manliness" of noisy, smoky engines and the expanding population and cities demanded growth of manufacturing, jobs, and speed in general (time is money). Ford opened up the roads to the common folks who made enough money selling eggs to buy a car, and the next thing you know, there's a tractor in every pot field and a chicken in every Senate seat. Pollution wasn't even considered hazardous until gasoline leaking into sewers started blowing manhole covers over the tops of buildings. I don't have a good answer for this, actually. Mostly, that there wasn't so much "intention" to adopting gasoline as there was immediate profits to be made.

Is this our role?

To consume? Short answer, "yes". Long answer: "Yes", "probably" , and "maybe not".

"Yes", we are exactly as every other living thing: consumers of available resources producing something useful; either in our existence, our help propagating life, or production of waste products which feed something else that supports the environment we need to eat (sometimes consumption is actually a useful action in proper perspective..cleanup and sustenance).

"Probably"..Based on current example, the role of humans is exactly as you stated: to consume everything we can get our hands on, increasing exponentially until we destroy ourselves and most, if not all, living things on the planet.

"Maybe not", (there are some big IFs in this): Almost every fiber of our System of systems has been created with feedback mechanisms to modulate consumption. The problem is that those feedback mechanisms have a plus sign instead of a negative sign (incentives vs. sales taxes, production quotas instead of production limits, lower interest rates instead of higher, tax code "dependent" deductions instead of charges). Also, the exponential growth rate is problematic at first glance because we don't see how it can continue. That's the beauty of it: it can't, and so it won't. The maybe comes into whether or not humans will recognize the real danger as a threat (to profits?), reverse the signs of their feedback mechanisms, and manage to Be the Potential that they possess: protecting Earth from asteroids while making our actions intentionally useful to the future, rather than stealing from it.
In the case of our perceptions, the exponential rate is better than a linear slope because it looks more like we are going to hit a wall. Some people are trying to do something about it now, all over the world, so there's some chance of at least saving the realization of what happens for the record.

Okay, one more:

Is our perception of life merely a perception precisely like our light spectrum sensitive eyes?

No, Keanu. That's just dumb. You can do better than fall for that.
MEANING is an illusion: LIFE is absolutely amazing when we drop the pretense bullshit that every Ted, Dick, and Pope try to shove down our throats and indoctrinate everyone as babies with belief in nonsensical crap (Good, God, Gurus). A purely random universe still allows things like energy-based beings, psychic connections, alien races, planets made of chocolate, etc. An anthropocentric universe where humans are "created" to live on one Garden of Eden and drive Escalades with aluminum rims on giraffe hunts is bizarro world.
We are here, right now. The lack of "meaning" means that we have one shot at a limited life to be useful beyond our imagination and contribute to the future of everything. If that means picking up a shovel and planting a tree, perhaps that tree will learn to communicate with some tree on Betelgeuse. We don't know. The possibilities of all of this trivial circle jerking we call a life are endless, and the more we get caught in the quicksand of marketing and somnambulance, the more we cut ourselves off from those possibilities.
Do be do be do.
That's what life is.
When we drop the mystical pretenses, and embrace the chemical influences that produce Love, Hate, Anger, Hunger: isn't that more amazing when we think it just developed day after day after day, species after species after species, eons and eons and eons....until right now..when we can reach out and touch a child and feel the jolt of pleasure from it and appreciate those billions of years of work to give us this moment and tell someone about it over thousands of miles?...
....and then we want to go out and slap some dumbass with loud pipes and a Cheney/Bush sticker on his Harley.
Good and Bad: there is no more 'meaning' to the chrome on his gas tank than to the pleasure of our child's touch...but one is useful to the future of everything and one is just Blind Faith consumption. Kinda makes you want to be an anarchist, doesn't it? The problem with liberals is that they are the ones who should be using the death penalty for assholes and defending the values of the future, instead of protest signs and sit-ins.

Monday, September 27, 2010

20 things Auntie Says..from FG

Tommy got me started. Blame him...;-)
Auntie says,
1. Any action taken based on unquestioned belief is evil.
“Do be do be do” -Frank Sinatra
2. Everything in moderation, including moderation.
3. People do shit. They have reasons for doing shit. IN THAT ORDER.
4. Intention is an action subroutine of the ability to imagine ourselves in some possible future. Belief in that intention is a parasite that increases consumption rates, and therefore increases reproduction and drives even more belief and more consumption. Belief in the illusion of free choice prevents moderation of belief.
5. Cold fusion is not cold.
6. Anything you think you know for sure is probably fucking wrong.
7. Hope is what got the Jews to get on the trains.
8. Resistance may be futile, but then, so is cooperation. It’s just a matter of timing.
9. Love is a chemical reaction in our bodies to natural phenomena. It is not “the answer”. It is not God. It is the sexy part of fucking.
10. Death is not a question, nor a beginning, nor a doorway. It is the End of an individual: a bargain we received in exchange for sex. If we didn’t die, we wouldn’t need to reproduce. If we didn’t reproduce, we wouldn’t adapt fast enough to fit the environment as the environment changes.
11. There is no “meaning” to the universe. It just fucking IS. That is the distilled wisdom of God: “I Am”. If you understand this, then you can understand the lack of a need for a god.
12. Ideas are like armpits: everyone usually has at least two and they both stink, and someone else has two just like them, only cheaper.
13. An idea is not property. You don’t own the fucking universe. It allows you to exist out of sheer chance. Contribute to its future or die.
14. Money is Soylent Green.
15. Time is not a dimension. It is a comparative sequence of events. Measurement of time is an oxymoron. You don’t “measure” it, you create it with a clock.
“Time is an illusion. Lunchtime; doubly so.” -Douglas Adams
16. There is only one universe. That’s why it’s called that.
17. There is nothing supernatural. It would be “outside” the universe, and by definition, could not exist. There ARE many things that are unexplained. Belief won’t change what they are or are not.
18. My border collie is probably smarter than your honor student’s principal, and she rolls in rotten animals to smell good. She just doesn’t believe in it as a methodology.

19. Inertia sucks.
20. "Dig your heels firm unto dirt-- and where is the dirt going?" -Frank Herbert, "The Jesus Incident"

Thursday, August 19, 2010


I've spent my life complaining, but also fixing things. I'm listening to Modesitt's "Imager." His other book, "Haze" is also good at inserting logic and political science into science fiction/fantasy scenarios. In Imager, the quote goes something like, "Complaining doesn't help. Anyone who has the interest and ability to do something about a problem would already have done so, and anyone not interested or able, won't."

Now, in a primitive, civilized world, this makes perfect sense. In our lawyered-up, liability-depressed world with too many religions, nations, and ideas in general, the ability to do something about a problem is drowned in paperwork, permits, and lawsuits, while the inability to do something is rewarded with less stress, fewer obligations, and even money if one is technically disabled (referring here to people who are unable to cope with the stresses of life in general...or at least those that think they can't or even (heaven forbid!) are encouraged to believe/pretend they can't). The massive exposure to the dangers around us (especially cars) doesn't help the situation. People are killed and disabled by the thousands every year just because of a fascination with automobiles and the 'American Dream' of a house in the suburbs or ex-urbs.
As much as I love to complain (a bitchin' sailor is a happy sailor), I am probably the only one who is going to be concerned about my problems and the only one who will probably do anything to deal with them, and I really would rather stop complaining and do more fixing. Though I believe downsizing and simplifying would help a lot, that takes an enormous amount of work to backtrack from the buildup of 'Stuff' in my current situation (farming).
Too many machines, too little labor to replace them, and I am not allowed to just slap my neighbors in irons even though they are so brain-dead that they wouldn't notice my irons replacing the irons of their current master/bank/employer.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

5 important things, 2 of which are imaginary

In response to a political question about "test for religion" in political office, I came up with this response, which turned out not to be so much 'political' or 'religious' after all...

We need a new convention. One to determine the purpose of humanity on
this earth, and to decode the successful behaviors of natural systems
that have been on the planet much longer than our measly imaginations
have. Beneath those systems lie some simple rules which should be applied:

1. Belief doesn’t matter: actions do. (As far as we can tell, humans are the only species that lives according to beliefs that are not sensed directly, and we are having negative effects, rather than positive ones, on the ecosystem.)
2. Give back more than you take. (Successful species have a net useful contribution to an ecosystem.)
3. Diversity is as important as quantity. (If an environment changes, it is the fringe rather than the 'normal' which are adapted to thrive in a new niche.)
4. Joining groups is not mandatory. (Leaving the comfort of a niche compensates for the inevitable changes in environments.)
5. Actions taken based on blind belief (in gods, governments or 'gurus') are irresponsible and usually destructive. (This is simply an extension of #1: Belief doesn't matter until actions are taken. If the imaginary (anything not directly sensed/must be believed) is used to justify actions, then a disconnect from reality occurs. Temporary cognitive dissonance is called "unconsciousness.", and one shouldn't be driving when asleep.)

I think that in most of the natural world, #1 and #5 are irrelevant, leaving 2,3,4 in order of importance.

Because We Can

This post is really just a placeholder. If you're bored, read on. It will be edited and added to, but there won't be new posts very often, if at all. The purpose of this page is to refine the following until it covers what needs to be said. Copyright "Me".

In the course of all of Time's passing, humans make their way in a
complementary niche to our existence. There are important features of
this relationship which we may explore using what we call
"consciousness"; the ability to form connections between the sensory
memories in our heads and the world as we experience it to be. In order
to truly understand what it means to be human, we must first meet
another conscious species and establish some form of understanding that
will reflect back to our senses an impartial mirror of ourselves and our
actions. Because we do not have such a species readily available, the
best we can do is explore how our cohabitant, unimaginative fellow
species have come to exist or not, and project that model to our selves
and our relationship with the universe and the possible future results
of our actions in the present. Past actions should only be considered as
part of our memory and as examples of cause and effect that may help to
project future consequences, but too much concern with history is
generally not useful, as we cannot change the past. We live in the
present at all times, and our actions affect the future for all time,
but as most of us already know, our consciousness does not remain in the
present moment, nor directly in control of our actions in all moments.
In order to understand why this is, let's begin with one possible
picture of the real beginning of what we know as our physical universe.
Through the 20th century, our best physicists have spent a great
deal of time and money developing what they call "The Standard Model" of
physics. Though it has a few holes to fill, and it makes little sense to
our daily command of physical relationships and objects, this model
works to represent some basic ideas of how physical matter exists. Some
key concepts involved are these:
1. That the underlying universe is either not definable or it is purely
random in nature. In other words, the further we dig, the less we find
makes sense within the reductionist philosophy of dimensions and
mathematics. Ergo, to fully reduce this conundrum, the end result must
be pure randomness, where no structure actually exists which can
maintain itself as any form. Experiments generally confirm this, such as
Cassimir force (the force which pushes two plates together once all
frequencies above the Planck length are blocked from entering the space
between the plates. Above this level of the universe, we exist with the
particles and energy frequencies of the Standard Model, where particles
of some range of qualities occur in various forms of stability and
lifespan, depending on properties determined by themselves, their
relationship to the random background, or their relationship to other
Particles may have certain properties which allow them to maintain
existence (exclusion principles, quantum levels, spin, etc), and thus,
are useful to themselves as opposed to randomly decaying under the rule
of entropy. They may have some pattern which sets up a continuous
exchange with the random background of input vs. output 'existence
energy(for lack of a better term)' which, over time leaves a net amount
of input or 'usefulness'.
2. Such a flow of existence or 'resonance' of existence would have some
net effect on the environment. On a macro scale, the mathematics of this
effect may be compared to relativistic gravitational force. The
important factor for discussion purposes here is not the exact nature of
the force (electrical, strong, gravitation), but the 'net' effect of the
momentary existence/action vs. a purely random universe which would have
no net existence at any time or place. Once such effect was established
at any one point, or at many points, it could never return to pure
randomness as long as it remains in existence, and in this particular
model, it is the existence of pure randomness which provides the
force/energy/structure which supports the known physical universe.
Take or leave this model and replace it with whatever you believe,
but the net usefulness RATIO between inputs (randomness, gravity,
energy) and outputs(work, motion, decay) of any particle/force/energy is
the crux of this concept to remember.
In the known, verifiable records and research regarding the growth
and stable existence of physical things, we see this ratio of a net
usefulness working. When enough particles form from randomness, their
very existence creates an attraction toward each other by their
'warping' of the random background. This gravity or charge creates
motion, which again causes an effect on the immediate environment and on
the particles themselves. By extrapolating these effects to greater and
greater levels of complexity, an overall pattern of effects creates
matter, dust, stars, planets, and all of the physical universe we see.
Whether one wants to believe in a purely random source, or a
supernatural one, the activities and results are the same, and the
continuing existence of random decay vs. living structure is visible and
useful to all.
Our next effort in this pursuit of understanding is to compare the
usefulness of lifeless matter to living matter. Fortunately, this
comparison and its importance has already been done by E. Schroedinger,
in his essay, "Life as Anti-Entropy". Schroedinger does good work
showing how living matter takes the complication of molecules to an
accelerated existence, utilizing the products of entropic decay as raw
material for DNA to build structure that reproduces itself. The action
of living organisms is much like gravity. Gravity allows matter to
accumulate in empty space to become planets, creating surfaces and
resources that reflect the dispersed nature of the universe itself in
condensed form. A planet represents an accumulation of the dust in a
particular area of space...a concentration of distributed potential
which otherwise would interact very rarely, if at all. Eventually, the
interaction of gases vs. liquids vs. solids and heat (impacts, local
star radiation) vs cooling(infrared radiation into space) equalizes over
time as appropriate to the factors of that place in the universe. The
possibilities of the zone of space between Venus and Mars are
concentrated as what we call "Earth". In addition to the resources which
accumulated in the first few billion years, there was also a continuous
bombardment from additional materials, both from the original
environment which formed the sun and planets, asteroids and comets, and
from random space dust along the sweep of the solar system's path
through the universe. We cannot know for sure of any material stranger
than what we already find on Earth and so far see evidence that the
majority of the universe is formed along similar lines to the atoms we
have within us and around us. This is based on spectrographic lines in
starlight and the behaviors of bodies and galaxies that we can observe.
In other words, the only thing so far that seems to be unique about the
behavior of matter on Earth compared to matter far away, is that there
is a vast array of interrelated living DNA on this planet, and we only
believe it to be unique here because we have not (as far as we know)
observed or made contact with other living matter than what seems to
have formed here and diversified to fill every available niche that will
support it, even to extremes of dryness, wetness, radiation,
temperatures, and pressures. It is apparent that somehow, DNA molecules
have a way of constantly increasing or diversifying their useful
reproductive capability even as the universe randomly tries to
exterminate it. How can something so vulnerable manage to always survive
this continuous battle?
Perhaps this is so amazing because it isn't so different from what
actually formed the physical universe itself. The random interaction
between and among the seemingly infinite variations of molecules begin
with the formation of those molecules themselves in an infinitely
random, nonstructured universe. In the ocean, random waves constantly
lap at all sides of a ship, with the net result of the ship basically
staying in one place. Place another ship nearby, however, and the net
result is that each ship shields waves from the other, causing a
resulting net force that pushes them closer together. Two ships are more
complex than one. Two molecules are more complexity than a single one.
Perpetual attraction causes perpetually increasing complexity. Random
events decrease complexity by breaking things apart. If the increasing
complexity is greater than the action of random decay, the net result is
a continued existence of a thing. Gravity overcomes random motion of
dust through space to create planets. Electrical charge overcomes random
particle motion to create molecules from single atoms. Once the pattern
of charges causes a mirror image of itself, there is perpetual
replication amid the continuously increasing complexity. Sometimes the
increasing complexity is not retained, and the replication process is
simple and repeated. Sometimes random decay causes failure of the
process. Sometimes random failure creates an additional increase in
complexity with the available amino acid materials. Overall, there will
be a bell-shaped curve that represents the species' variations, with
those in the mean being most reflective of the available environmental
niche. Large changes in the environment may open new niches which will
be unpopulated for the most part. The filling of these new areas occurs
most efficiently by the species which are immediately matched to them.
These species may be available as the outlying 'fringe' of the previous,
fully populated species. The 'normal' of that species remains adapted to
the old niche. If the old niche remains, and a new niche opens, then the
fringe of the old may increase in number to a point of competition with
the old 'normal' group. If the original niche is reduced through
environmental changes, then the 'norm' is likely to die off, leaving the
'fringe' as the new 'normal' in its comfortable new environment.