Thought

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Things that make you go, “hmmm…”, or at least made me mentally think it, and write about it.


Philosophy

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Earlier this year, I saw Phil Hansen speak in person (at Adobe MAX). His speech hit me profoundly. It’s a fantastic speech/story about how limitations can expand us. Definitely worth the time to watch (the video).

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Ends and the means: which justifies which?

Many people believe that the ends can justify the means. That if you are doing a really good thing, or stopping a really bad thing, that you can use any means to achieve or stop those ends; since the ends are or so severe. Sounds reasonable; but they are wrong. What that really says is that they want their goals so bad that they will compromise their beliefs to get there, or don't have the right beliefs in the first place. They'll probably only succeed in achieving the wrong end in the process.

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I.Q., E.Q, A.Q., and B.S.

  • What is sanity? It basically means, "being reasonable" and "normal", as judged by the masses (or "in accordance with how the majority think").
  • What is Genius? It basically means an abnormal IQ, to the point where the person is ≈1.5 times as "logical" as the average person, or basically testing beyond the 98th percentile (3rd or 4th deviation).

Do you notice any conflict between these two definitions? If you are that much smarter or different in how you think, what are the chances that you will think and perceive things the same as the "average"? The answer is, "not bloody likely".

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Chicken coops and society. In a hen house (chicken coop), chickens set a "pecking order" (who is the king of the roost), and who is beneath them. They also can get weird, and will see any "difference" from the norm as a "bad" thing. Weakness not only means attack by one, but sometimes by many. And any weakness or uniqueness is often responded to by a gang attack. Often chickens will not stop until the "deformed" or injured are killed, and genetic normalcy is safeguarded.

Humans are not so different.

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Malevolent liberty is better than benevolent tyranny. A lot of this boils down to the Trolly Problem: a thought experiment in ethics that goes like this: a runaway trolley is going to kill five people tied to one set of tracks, or you can flip a level where it will go to a side track and kill one person. Which is more ethical? For me, the victims not having a say in what you do, is where much of the problem is. In Liberty, they choose. In Tyranny, you choose for them.
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Here's a simple resolution for the new year (and every New Year): World Peace (or at least heading towards it).

While, "no war at all" is a near impossible, we could certainly strive to make the world (or at least our part of it) a better / more harmonious place. And contrary to what many will tell you, this isn't even that hard of a goal.

Q: How?
A: First, think about what causes conflict: then stop doing it. It's not rocket surgery.

Q: So what causes all conflicts?
A: One individual or group, trying to tell another, what to do and/or how to do it.

That's kind of it. You can't stop them from resisting your rules, but you can stop making them (and trying to enforce them). And if you don't try to force them into doing something they don't want to do, there's almost no conflict.
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People will tell you to "think outside the Box". I learned early on, they don't mean it. Or more often they mean "not too much outside the box".
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"You broke it, you bought it" is a bullshit (a fallacy) from the start. It makes society worse, and guarantees failure for both sides (outsiders and insiders).
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If you haven't read it, I suggest you read my article "Ends and means". The point is that humans have the ability to rationalize anything, for the sake of the greater good, but it their actions are how we measure them, not the ends they achieved. That gets us into this article's point; my personal belief that "you are what you do". Your actions, and your persona are inseparable.

It doesn't matter what you think you are, or wish you were, it matters what you are doing. If you steal, for whatever reasons, then you are a thief. If you assault someone, or intimidate someone, then you are a bully. If you lie, it doesn't matter why; you are still a liar. We will always have reasons and rationalizations for our actions; but what matters is what our actions are. Your actions define who you are at a given time in your life.

Critical Thinking (Skepticism)

4 Stages of Scientific Discovery

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Some folks idealize science and give it a credit for objectivity and integrity that it doesn't deserve. But like politics, business, industry, school, and research, it’s made of people. People have egos, frailties, emotions, blind-spots, bigotries and so on. So if someone is claiming that science is pure and that scientists follow the scientific method, they're in denial... or so deep into a belief system of faux objectivity in science, that they might as well belong to a cult.

The 4 stages of scientific discovery are:

  1. Denial in its existence
  2. Denial in its significance
  3. Misattribution to who did the work
  4. Refutation

Allegory of the Apes

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Apes in a cage will remember lessons, long after they're applicable. An allegory about how Apes are victims of systems-memory, and that they will remember to follow rules, even after they've forgotten why they were doing them in the first place (and why it might be OK to stop). Humans fall prey to the same false assumptions.
Main article: Allegory of the Apes

Driving by watching the rear view mirror

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A common mistake I've seen businesses repeat, over and over again - or more accurately I've seen many companies do once or twice until they go out of business or the idiots doing it are fired, is to "drive by watching the review mirror".

Instead of analyzing and thinking, learning technology (and markets and customers), they decide, "someone else is doing it, and since it worked for them, it'll work for us".

I want to head-smack them.... and then point out the first rule of Italian racing; "what's behind you, is not important". You're not them, they're not you: different timing, resources, talents, markets, culture, personalities, and so on -- so crushing brilliant new ideas (e.g. my ideas) because that's not what someone else is doing, is just stupid. I have no problems being told "no", if you have an intelligent reason for it, and can back it up. But "that's not what everyone else is doing" is called a bandwagon fallacy, and isn't intelligent or support. So, "everyone else does it that way", makes as much sense to me, as driving while watching all the cars behind you. By the time they slam on their brakes or swerve (and you notice and react), it is already too late. I prefer to keep my eye's on the road, and not try to lead by following.

Chesterton's Fence

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"Don't ever take a fence down until you know the reason it was put up"
~ C.K. Chesterton
Main article: Chesterton's Fence

Rants

Fake Hate

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Fake Hate still feels like hate. Rationalizing bad things, and trying to pin your crimes on the other side is as old as politics. But from making excuses for the Indian Genocides, fo racial lynching and the KKK, or interning the Japanese/Germans/Italians during WWII, 60's and 70's radicals, Antifa, BLM, the Unabomber, or democrats paying thugs to beat up Trump supporters at Trump rally's, and so on, by nature of youthful ignorance and self-righteousness, the left has always been more than willing to go there.

This is magnified since the mainstream media is so strongly in one camp, that they're jumping to conclusions about the right, ignoring evidence or downplaying acts by the left, thus by NOT denouncing leftist violence, they encourage more of it. Basic socio-economics, they raise the rewards for leftist violence by increasing the odds that:

  • (a) the won't be blamed
  • (b) if they are, it won't get as much airtime/consequences in the media
  • (c) that the lefts false-flag efforts stand a higher chance of success.

So while I'm 100% sure there's asshats on both sides of the aisle, and blaming the other side for doing less than they are is a normal -- if we let one side get away with rewriting atrocities (as the left tries), we'll get more atrocities.

So there no excuses for bad behavior: both sides should cut it out. But that won't happen until we hold BOTH sides accountable for their worst actions, not do what the media tries, which is to blame the right for everything that they start or participate in, and to brush under the rug any bad acts from their side.

Main article: Fake Hate

Unintended Consequences

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Every action causes a reaction. Some reactions are pleasant surprises, many are negatives, some are counter productive (perverse) and make the problem worse. Since consequences matter more than intentions, we have a social obligation to plan for them (and avoid them). The phrase is used as either a wry warning against the hubristic belief that humans can control the world around them, or more often against a really bad implementation of not-so-smart ideas or implementations.

Fool or Fraud

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I tend not to think in the world as black or white, where big issues are absolutely right or wrong, good or bad. Most people are trying to do the right thing, and selectively looking at evidence to support their view (with the best of intentions). But there's still quite a few issues that are more clear -- where if you know the topic and you aren't offering the best counter-points, you either don't know them (and are a fool on the topic), or you're intentionally omitting them (and you're a fraud as an honest person).
Main article: Fool or Fraud

Anti-Science Party

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Republicans are the anti-science party, unless we're talking about 9/11 truthers, Obama birther movement, anti-vaxxers, GMO's, Organic food, Nuclear energy, green energy, economics, minimum wage, "free” anything (healthcare, education, etc), Global Cooling, CO2 (Global Warming), Fluoride, Killer Bees, Bees, fracking, obesity, second hand smoke, DDT, gluten, FDA, bottled water, Alar, salt, fat, polyunsaturated fat, sugar, artificial sweetener, food coloring, diet soda, Electromagnetic Fields (EMF), Bird Flu, SARS, and so on. Twice as many democrats believe in: astrology, UFO’s, Ghosts. 50% more believe in: reincarnation, fortune telling, Bermuda Triangle, spiritual energy, the gender pay gap, the population bomb, peak oil, Ozone hole, gun control, don't believe life begins at conception (or viability), gender feminism, those that claim citizens united conferred corporate personhood (anti-history/facts). And so on.


Main article: Anti-Science Party

LGBTQ

Gender Dysphoria

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There's a quote, "never be so open-minded that your brains fall out". That's the difference between recognizing the malady of Gender Dysphoria and treating trans folks with respect, and demanding that the entire world play along with their delusion.


Main article: Gender Dysphoria

Charlotte and Restrooms

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support trans-folks being able to use whatever bathroom they want. Right up until they try to bully others and pass laws forcing others to [Gender Dysphoria| adapt to their delusion]. That's where they jump the shark and go from defending the little guy, into being the bullies. This article documents how the timeline went down, and where the bullied became the lying bullies.

Transgender NatGeo

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I don't like people exploiting children. NatGeo, the parents, and the LGBTQ community is exploiting this child for their agenda (or advertising). We know that most kids with gender dysphoria grow out of it, most that don't, are in for a lifetime of depression and challenges, and gender re-assignment doesn't help. So this to me is like celebrating and sensationalizing childhood schizophrenia, I'm not sure that helps anyone.
Main article: Transgender NatGeo

Race/Sexism

What is an 'ism?

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The more you dilute/expand and abuse a word, the weaker the meaning becomes. And the crybullies are abusing words like Racism, Sexism, Homophobia, Islamophobia, and so on, by either not understanding the meaning, or putting their agenda above the truth. This article tries to explain what is (and is NOT) an 'ism. Because obviously a lot of people seem to be getting their understanding wrong.
Main article: What is an 'ism?

How do you start a race war?

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Let's review the basics of what happened:

  • Two people were shot (one for being stupid, the other probably for being stupid)
  • Race baiters and the ignorant think they know what happened, and that it had anything to do with race: we have zero evidence to support that
  • Some of the worst (such as our President) have made inflammatory comments based on a complete lack of information, and have made the problems worse
  • Many cops have been murdered by the inflamed ignorant herd of haters and followers (up 44% this year, and ambushes are up even more)
  • The only people "winning" in this, are politicians that prey on these ignorant constituencies, Administrations that want to distract from their own problems or Hillary Clinton's incompetence, but as a society, all evidence is that we're getting dumber

Gender Wage Gap

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This one is many myths (lies) in one:

  • Women get $.77-.82 cents on the dollar compared to what men make (this injustice is called the "Gender wage/pay gap" or GWG)
  • We need big government (politicians) and new laws/regulations/taxes to fix it
  • Democrat politicians motives are all sincere, anyone that opposes is a sexist/misogynistic/bigot


Main article: Gender Wage Gap

Black Conspiracy Theology

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I'm not black, but I did live in black communities, and what I saw (as an outsider) was the black community distrusts the system and sees everything as conspiracies, thus every event that happens is seen through that bigoted lens. If most of the things you see are wrong/biased, then most of your reactions will also be wrong/biased, especially if the media/democrats are sensationalizing and feeding the hate/unrest.



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