Wednesday, May 31, 2017

US to pull out of climate accord

May as well regress in this area as well, continuing our decline into 3rd world status. Fortunately the rest of the world will keep implementing this agenda. And the US will return to it in 4 years once we vote out our illegitimate (aka fake) notmyPresident. That is, if he isn't impeached before then.

Macron: the right way to stand up to Russia

France's new President Macron said to Putin's face that Russian media tried to interfere in the French election. This is what a truly strong President looks like, certainly not the Russian-controlled  US (not my) President likely to be impeached and imprisoned for treason.

Republican Jesus

Another installment in this popular series: Rewriting the Bible.

Misunderstanding Metatheorizing

From Edwards, M. (2014). 'Misunderstanding Metatheorizing', SYSTEMS RESEARCH AND BEHAVIORAL SCIENCE.

"Metatheorizing can be done poorly and [...] adopt weak or inappropriate methods and can assume unreflexive and narrow conceptual perspectives, and it can be hidden within ideological positions that, for example, place business-centric applied research over the long-term ethical needs of communities. The post-modern critique of meta-perspectives has been particularly insightful for uncovering the ideological commitments that often go undeclared and unquestioned in big picture research."

AGT: Darci Lynne

I'm usually not crazy about kid acts, quite the contrary. But last night another kid showed incredible talent with this act that got Mel B's golden buzzer, putting her straight through to the live show.

America's Got Talent (AGT): Merrick Hanna

Another youngster moved me through dance, this time on AGT. This kid does an excellent job of interpreting the story of the song through his movements.

WOD: Diana Pombo

My favorite performance of the night. She qualifies for the next round with an 89.7 average score. Not only is she technically superb but she so far is the best at bringing emotional content to the dance.

World of Dance (WOD): Les Twins

From the new show that premiered last night. Let Twins have extensive professional experience and were the top scorers last night, getting a 95.7 average, by far the highest score.

Breaking Bad and neoliberalism

A FB IPS thread has been started on this theme, which linked to this article. As to the meaning of the term neoliberalism this one from Wikipedia is my meaning:

"Neoliberalism (neo-liberalism) refers primarily to the 20th-century resurgence of 19th-century ideas associated with laissez-faire economic liberalism. These include extensive economic liberalization policies such as privatization, fiscal austerity, deregulation, free trade, and reductions in government spending in order to increase the role of the private sector in the economy and society."

Setting aside the article on neoliberalism, it is definitely one of the show's major themes. The origin of the entire plot is Walter getting cancer and not having the healthcare he should have to pay for it. Hence he's left with no better choice then to do what he did. It's an obvious statement on a system that is so broken that it could care less for some of its best citizens, dedicated teachers.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Doug & Nicki

Nicki died May 25th. In honor of her memory, here is her and Doug's performance at the 2016 US Open Showcase division. RIP Nicki.

Republican Jesus

Another installment in this popular series.

Progressives still aren't winning

See this article detailing the continuing losses for progressives in the Dem Party. Are progressives ready yet to admit that voters still rightly think the Dem Party is corrupt to the core? And the possibility that it is at least in part why progressives are losing, as they are seen as part of that corrupt establishment? That maybe still clinging to the Party by trying to reform it might not be a winning strategy?

Thompson on Tononi's integrated information theory

From this article:

"Despite Tononi’s bold claim that 'consciousness is one and the same thing as integrated information' (2008, p. 232), integrated information does not seem sufficient for consciousness. On the one hand, even simple systems have some degree of integrated information, so the equation of consciousness and integrated information implies that even simple systems, such as a photodiode, have some degree of consciousness. On the other hand, complex digital computers can possess a high amount of integrated information. Yet neither system is conscious (at least the attribution of consciousness to such systems seems highly implausible) (see Searle 2013). As Ned Block (2009) points out, the integrated information theory fails to distinguish between intelligence, in the sense of being able to solve complex problems by integrating multiple sources of information, and consciousness, in the sense of sentience or felt awareness (phenomenal consciousness). Since integrated information does not seem sufficient for consciousness—let alone identical to it—the presence or absence of integrated information cannot be the crucial mark of whether a state is conscious or not conscious."

Monday, May 29, 2017

How capitalism exploits us

And what we can do about it. This video describes the difference between markets and capitalism. The core of capitalism is an employer/employee relationship with underlying conflict, tension, anger and resentment. Why? Because the employer's intention is to make the most profit out of labor's work while paying them the least amount possible. The worker must produce more than he gets and doesn't share in the surplus. That's how capitalism is intentionally designed.

One solution is the workers get all the surplus they create e.g. via a cooperative model, where the employers and the employees are all in the same boat and share equitably. Any business can be changed into a co-op by giving the workers ownership and control of it. They democratically decide how to distribute the surplus. Also co-op workers are local to the area of the business, so see the immediate effects of their business on the community and therefore take greater care to preserve the environment and social relations of that community. If automation eliminates the need for half the work, then let the workers work half as much and share in the more efficient surplus created by that technology. This allows for more self and community development, thereby increasing quality of life.

Whole Foods represents the failures of conscious capitalism

See the article here. Sales are declining in part due to competition from other stores that cost less. So WF is taking drastic measures, bringing in the Walmart types to save the day, exactly what it purported to be against. The WF simple-minded model that "if we just think right with good intentions and an integral model then the rest will take care of itself" is proving no match for the realities of capitalism. Hence WF is ripe for a capitalistic takeover that will revamp the entire chain along its usual vulture path.

Hartmann on white privilege

Good description starting around 1:15. It's something below conscious radar for most of us white people. People of color live in an entirely different world, even the schools they go to. Learning about and understanding the phenomenon at least gives us a check to think before we say stupid shit like: "If these poor black people just applied themselves like I did then they wouldn't be in that situation."

Our economy is based on a lie

Compare the following with an ecological economy. Capitalism inverts scarcity and abundance, making scarce resources seem abundant as well as the reverse.

The noose tightens around Kushner

And if Kushner goes down so will T-Swamp, who had to know of this. Kushner met with the Russian Ambassador (aka spy) during the transition (December of 2016) to set up a secret back-channel of communication with the Kremlin (starting around 0:18 in the video below). T-Swamp Tweeted that it's fake new, of course. And even the Secretary of Homeland Security sees no problem with this! The problem is that it's illegal and borders on, if not outright crosses that border, into treason.

Kennilingus hypersensitivity

Once again there are some who get their panties in a was over the word kennilingus, most recently in this FB thread. I first responded with two Maher videos here and here, emphasizing liberal hypersensitivity over trivialities instead of focusing on more important issues.  Then I posted this:

I've spent a lot of time in the past not only criticizing Wilber but appreciating him. And I do so by being well-informed of his work. This can be verified by anyone with the time to read the Ning forum. So if one wants to put me in a box of just hating the guy, they're 1) wrong and 2) likely within the kennilingus cult.

As to the word kennilingus, which gets hyper-sensitive people's panties in a wad, I now typically use it to refer to Wilber's work generally. i.e., Kenni's language. Words have different meanings and connotations depending on context. Next time you read the word put it in context. Or pull on your panties. Whatever gets you off.

Of course Wilber is still referenced in this forum, as his work has much value. But he is but one of several sources used here and is no longer the main source for me and some others. However if one wants to join the academic coterie in the US, or be accepted by Wilber, then he still must be the top dog. But that is far from the case at CIIS or at Integral Review. The article I referenced from the latter on syntegrality doesn't have even one mention of him, nor was it needed.

I'm personally at a point where for me syntegrality no longer needs to be propped up with him. These days I much prefer the orientating generalization of the collaborative commons as the base of the emerging next wave of evolution, spiritual and otherwise.

Kennilinguistically yours, theurj

Sunday, May 28, 2017

The Brand New Congress Platform

Continuing the last post, see BNC's platform here and compare with the Congressional Progressive Caucus agenda. This is what we the people told us they want, so if we organize and disseminate these values and ideals progressives will take back a majority of governmental seats in the US, from local to national, and restore American values back into the system.

What the Republican Party used to be

But no longer is. Hartmann interviews a Republican running for Arkansas' 3rd district, Robb Ryerse, who wants to take the Party back to what it used to be: Progressive! Hartmann opens with the Eisenhower Republican platform, which expanded social security, expanded unions, built the interstate highway system, hospitals and schools and wanted equal pay. Ryerse's platform includes: meaningful tax reform, meaning eliminating tax loopholes for the wealthiest and biggest corps; liberty and opportunity for all people, meaning putting people ahead of Party politics by providing healthcare and college for all; responsible government spending that does the most good for the most people, meaning spending on healthcare, college and infrastructure instead of tax breaks for the wealthiest or bailouts for Wall Street. He sounds not at all like Republicans of today.

He's a throwback to when there were actually progressives in that Party that could work with progressives in the Dem Party to get things done for we the people. Now it's the regressive Wall Street whores in both Parties that have taken over and want no part in a progressive populist platform that we the people want, despite Party affiliation. Remember that T-Swamp won on a populist message to drain the Washington swamp, a large part of why he won. A segment of those who believed him are waking up to the fact that he lied and they want a genuine populist agenda. That's why perhaps this guy will be more the standard bearer on his Party. And the US can return to a progressive nation where both Parties have that agenda and work together to get it done.

PS: He is the first Republican candidate endorsed by Brand New Congress, which is devoted to running progressives to replace the establishment corporatists in Congress by implementing this people's platform, which all endorsed candidates must support.

Told You So

Paramore on Corden a few nights ago. I like their distinctive sound.

Pope: capitalism is terrorism

The Pope does it again. When asked about Muslim terrorism he turns the question on its head and says terrorism's root lies in capitalism. People resort to terrorism as a last resort because they are abused by a greedy system that not only doesn't provide opportunity but intentionally thwarts it. It's the God of money that is the problem, not religion.

US corporations love Canadian healthcare

See this article for the details. Large US companies like Ford, GM and Chrysler have moved half of their production job to Canada because their single-payer healthcare system lowers those costs from $15,000 per employee to about $1,000. Other estimates are not as glaring, but still about 1/3 less in Canada. Company executives also use that system because the care is good and wait times are not a problem. Canada's system works, which is why it has survived through administrations from both sides of the aisle. So next time a US Republican tells you how shitty Canada's healthcare system is, just ask a US corporation.

Comments on metamodernism

I'm not crazy about the postmodern (pomo) characterization in #2 of the first 10. On the one hand is the critique of pomo not being able to take a metanarractive stand due to situational considerations, yet taking a metanarrative stand that the pomo stand is right. Wilber might call that its performative contradiction. But in another sense, at least in regard to #2, pomo is rightly taking a better, metamodern stand against the usual dichotomy more often found in modernism.

At the end of the 2nd article he asks a lot of questions about metamodernism that need to be answered. One in particular I highlight is indicative that the field is not set in stone based on any particular interpretation. And that it is pointless to argue that if one doesn't agree with any particular interpretation then of course they just can really be metamodern. The broader integral community is learning this, even if there are still some dogmatic islanders.

"Disagreements between metamodernists still abound and will continue to be a topic of conversation online and in academic journals."

Note that online conversation is a valid means of exploration, not just academic journals. Yes, the former doesn't have the strict sort of peer review of the latter. But the former does indeed have peer validation of the peer to peer sort, just as useful and worthy. Which is in fact one of the principles Abramson details.

Another interesting point is that many in the art world are already displaying some of these metamodern principles, even being ignorant of them or identifying as modern or postmodern. One doesn't have to intellectually elucidate or accept these principles to be examples of them. And one certainly does not have to speak metalingus to be part of the phenomenon. And one certainly does not exemplify the phenomenon just by rote learning the principles and espousing them. 

5 more basic principles of metamodernism

Continuing this post, here's 5 more of Abramson's principles. Again see the link for details, necessary to get the full import of the bullet points. I know, if you're a Swamper the bullet points are sufficient for a deficient attention span.

1. Reconstruction instead of deconstruction.
2. Engagement instead of exhibitionism. 
3. Effect as well as affect.
4. Walllessness and borderlessness.
5. Flexible intertextuality.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Fox reports facts, is accused of being fake news

So Kurtz at Fox reported the facts revealed in a recent poll indicating T-Swamp's approval ratings are way down. But Fox viewers inundated him with hate mail saying he's a liberal and just more fake news. Kurtz laments that people no longer believe the media reports facts and wonders how this all happened. Look no further than Fox So-Called News, which has been the leader in fake news all these years and programmed viewers to mistrust all other sources of information. The chickens have come home to roost so that Fox can no longer report actual facts.

Ben Carson reveals Republican magical thinking

Yes, he's too dumb to realize that he did it but he did it nonetheless. He revealed what Republicans believe, that one's circumstances are completely determined by one's attitude. If you're poor it's your own damned fault. All this really reveals is the simple mindedness of this absurd premise. He said:

"You take somebody that has the right mindset, you take everything from them and put them on the street and I guarantee in a little while they’ll be right back up there. And you take somebody with the wrong mindset, you can give them everything in the world, they’ll work their way right back down to the bottom.”

Reich's plan for a new Democratic Party

See the article here for the details. Just the bullet points follow. While I agree with Reich I have serious doubts that the Party has any intention of doing this, as they have yet to recognize these as problems that need fixing. (That is, with the exception of number 4, which can't do it alone.) And it seems the Party has in fact continually been ignoring these suggestions given the newly elected heads of the DNC and CA Party, not to mention losing some key races already. His number 8 recognized the Party might not do this, so suggests one or more strong progressive national organizations that demand the Party to do so.

1. Overhaul the DNC
2. Embrace populism
3. Mobilize, energize and educate the base
4. Expose Trump as a fraud  

5. Focus on 2018 now
6. Look to the state and local level
7. Protect groups threatened by Trump
8. Failing all else, look outside the party


Benji & Nicole

And they won the Pro Showcase Division at MADjam.

Gary & Susan

This routine won the Pro Classic Division at MADjam in March.

Tenement Song

Pixies last night on Colbert.

Colbert: T-Swamp laughingstock of NATO

Third Industrial Revolution implemented in Europe & China

See this article for details. An excerpt showing how Rifkin's work is influencing the world, except for the regressive US.

"On February 7, the European Union unveiled its 'Smart Europe' plan influenced by Rifkin’s work, which outlines how the 350 regions of Europe will start building out the road maps to transition into a new infrastructure of 5G internet, renewable energy, and automated driverless transport internet, all riding on top of an internet of things platform. Regions in the north of France, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands have already begun their transition over the last few years. There’s a similar plan taking place in China: After Premier Li Keqiang read Rifkin’s seminal book, The Third Industrial Revolution, he made Rifkin’s strategies core to the country’s 13th Five-Year plan that was announced last March, and includes billions in renewable energy investment by 2020."

As one successful example, the Hauts-de-France region in France began working with Rifkin in 2012 and has since transformed itself per the video below.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Der Spiegel on T-Swamp

From an article in that German paper written by Klaus Brinkbaumer. He has the Biggest Loser down to a T(Swamp).

"Donald Trump is not fit to be president of the United States. He does not possess the requisite intellect and does not understand the significance of the office he holds nor the tasks associated with it. He doesn't read. He doesn't bother to peruse important files and intelligence reports and knows little about the issues that he has identified as his priorities. His decisions are capricious and they are delivered in the form of tyrannical decrees.

"He is a man free of morals. As has been demonstrated hundreds of times, he is a liar, a racist and a cheat. I feel ashamed to use these words, as sharp and loud as they are. But if they apply to anyone, they apply to Trump. And one of the media's tasks is to continue telling things as they are: Trump has to be removed from the White House. Quickly. He is a danger to the world."

Mayor of New Orleans on confederate statues

Bravo for standing up against racism and bigotry, which is what such statues represents. A brief clip is below. You can see his whole speech here.

Colbert makes fun of Melania swatting away T-Swamp's hand

Scarborough calls out his own Party

The Republican Party, that is. He shows a clip of Sanders questioning Mulvaney and then says Mulvaney is outright lying about cuts to Medicaid. He continues that his Party is continually lying about other provisions of their health(don't)care bill as well. Perhaps the GOP thinks because T-Swamp gets away with lying all the time they can as well. Not to Scarborough and the rest of the American people with at least half a brain. He said: "My Party is going straight to hell." They've already been there for some time though. You tell them Joe.

A well-informed constituent challenges her representative

On the Swamp(don't)care bill. She has experience as a patient advocate on all forms of healthcare insurance, both before and after Obamacare. She has real concerns about States putting people with preexisting conditions in high risk pools and recounts her husband's experience. It's obvious she knows a lot more than her representative on the topic, who has no good response. Instead he invites her to his office to discuss it further, but given that she's tried to contact his office on several previous occasions with no response we can pretty much assume it's an empty gesture.

Colbert on the new CBO score

Which provides facts about the T-Swamp/GOP health(don't)care bill.

Sanders rips Mulvaney a new one

The good Senator keeps asking the Director of the Office of Management and Budget why billionaires deserve a huge tax break via the repeal of the estate tax and the latter keeps prevaricating and not answering the question. Bravo to Sanders for fighting for the people and not the 1%.

T-Swamp shoves NATO leader out of the way

What a narcissistic bully. And after he pushes the guy out of the way he postures like he's the center of attention. This is not only The Worst (not my)President in history but a most disgusting human being as well.

Don't Kill My Vibe

Sigrid on Corden last night performing the title song from her debut EP. The song starts with a rather typically boring verse and melody, but the chorus gets innovative and interesting. Plus there's a third change that's also interesting. She also starts dancing and playing with her voice making for a fun performance.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Scientists refute EPA head Pruitt on global warming

Not surprising that Pruitt would make a false statement on the topic. Pruitt said: "Over the past two decades satellite data indicates there has been a leveling off of warming." So the scientists in charge of the satellite data said he's full of shit. To the contrary: "Satellite temperature measurements do not support the claim of a ‘leveling off of warming’ over the past two decades." See the link for the supporting scientific evidence. Once again, scientific facts prove the deniers wrong. But of course that won't stop them from pulling lies out of their crusty asses.

A Democrat wins in T-Swamp country

A progressive Democrat  on Tuesday won the 9th Assembly District special election in Long Island, a district that T-Swamp won in the last election. And it was due in large part to the liberal wing of the Democratic Party, the state teacher's union and Working Families Party strongly supporting this progressive candidate. Dems can win in T-Swamp country if, like here, they pursue a progressive agenda. Hopefully the Dem Party will take notice.

Some comments on Transformative Ecological Economics

Continuing this post, my sense of reading the Foreword is that we learn from observing ecological systems in nature and align an economy within those principles and parameters. "Without material growth" refers to the notion that we don't need ever increasing economic growth to support our currently wasteful consumption habits. Part of living ecologically is understanding the limits of growth, economic or consumptive, and modifying accordingly.

I'd add that this also applies to those in the integral community obsessed with endless growth of complexity as indicative of evolution. There comes a point when further complexification divorces from its ecological base and strays into abstract metaphysical territory. Hence my emphasis instead on developmental synplexity, the kind that retains its embodied, embedded, enactive and extended interactivity.

Dark chocolate reduces risk of atrial fibrillation

See this long-term study of 55,502 patients over 13.5 years. Chocolate intake reduced the incidence of atrial fibrillation (afib) 10-20%. The rates depended on chocolate consumption: 1-3 (1 oz) servings per month 10%; 1 serving per week 17%; 2-6 servings per week 20%; 1 or more serving per day 16%. For women the best dose was once per week showing a 21% reduction; for men it was 2-6 servings per week showing a 23% reduction. However it was recommended that dark chocolate was better than milk chocolate, as it contains more of the chemical elements responsible for this effect.

The study also noted that previous studies showed "that moderate consumption of chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, improves markers of cardiovascular health and is associated with a lower rate of myocardial infarction, heart failure, composite cardiovascular adverse outcome and cardiovascular mortality."

Transformative Ecological Economics

Fritjof Capra writes the Foreword to this new book. An excerpt of that Foreward:

"The basic pattern of organization of a living system is the network. Ecosystems are understood in terms of food webs, i.e. networks of organisms; organisms are networks of cells, and cells are networks of molecules. More precisely, a living system is a self-generating network. Each component of the network helps to transform and replace other components, and thus the entire network continually creates, or recreates, itself.

"According to this systemic conception of life, neither the economy nor society can be understood as collections of objects, but only in terms of relationships between subjects. They cannot survive in an atomized state any more than an organism can survive in fragments. Moreover, the fact that the basic pattern of organization of all living systems is the network implies that an economy will be truly alive — flexible and capable of creative adaptations to changing circumstances — only if it is organized as a network, composed of smaller living networks and integrated into larger social and ecological networks. Indeed, Jakobsen argues that a new ecological economy might be best developed from a network of decentralized and globally interconnected ecovillages.

"A living system is materially and energetically open and always operates far from equilibrium. There is a continual flow of energy and matter through the system. All living systems need energy and food to sustain themselves, and all living systems produce waste. But in nature, organisms form communities, the ecosystems, in which the waste of one species is food for the next, so that matter cycles continually through the ecosystem.

T-Swamp praises Duterte's drug program

Yes he did. President Duterte of the Philippines and cronies have killed over 7,000 people involved with drugs, no trial, no defense. And the Swamp praised him as doing a good job. This is his idea of how to handle the drug problem. Not to worry, because Attorney General Sessions is not that far off from wanting to implement this sort of policy. Meanwhile, on the same call the Swamp revealed top secret intelligence about our nuclear submarines in the area. JFC.

Sanders on the Reverse Robin Hood budget

It's the biggest transfer of wealth to the already wealthy in the history of the world. See, the Swamp is the biggest and the best at something. Same with the health(don't)care bill. Reverse Robin Hood to the rescue of those poor, poor rich people who just can't get enough from those who already don't have enough. I'd try to shame T-Swamp and his critters but it's obvious that their moral sociopathy knows no such emotions like shame or compassion.

DeVos: private schools receiving federal funds can discriminate

It's very clear in this testimony. DeVos is given a specific example of the Lighthouse Christian Academy, which receives federal vouchers but will not allow admission to students of LGBT families. DeVos is asked repeatedly if such schools should receive federal vouchers and she keeps coming back to if that's what parents and the States want then by all means it should be so. Sexual orientation or identity is fair game for discrimination to those claiming freedom of choice with our money. We don't get a choice in paying for this discrimination.

Colbert on the budget's $2 trillion math error

Of course T-Swamp and his critters can't do math, since the budget proposal contains this error. Simple explanation: the Swamp is an idiot. A former Treasury Secretary said this kind of mistake would fail a student in an introductory economic course. That's T-Swamp all right. An idiot that has no idea what he's doing and is the Biggest Failure in History.

The truth about T-Swamp's budget

Yes, get the facts from Real News, which reports real facts. This budget will contain the biggest tax cut in history for the wealthy and a massive increase in military spending. Meanwhile it deeply cuts funds to social spending like Medicaid, welfare, disability benefits, veteran services, student loans and childcare, to name a few. Here we see clearly the morality of T-Swamp: Further enrich the wealthy on the backs of everyone else. How Christian of him. Just what Jesus would do, right? NOT!
Also see Stiglitz on this budget. 

New CBO score on Republican health(don't)care bill

And it isn't good. 23 million people will lose coverage. States can take away pre-existing condition coverage. They can reinstate lifetime caps on how much will be spent on your illness. If pre-existing condition coverage is available, the premiums will skyrocket beyond affordability. Premiums for the elderly will be 4 times higher, again reducing coverage for this demographic.

However it will reduce the deficit by $119 billion over the next decade and the premiums will be lower. However the prices come down for healthy people who have far less comprehensive coverage, and because far fewer sick people will have access to coverage. As to reducing the deficit, it does so by reducing federal coverage support to low and middle-income families, again reducing access to the most vulnerable. Also they are cutting $800 billion from Medicaid. However most of that money saved will go to tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations, with just a small portion going to deficit reduction.

This is the reality of what you get with Republicans. Don't buy the spin; understand the facts.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Mark Pocan questions DeVos on school vouchers

Pocan is a representative from Wisconsin and familiar with how the voucher education program has been an abysmal failure there. So he questions our new Secretary of Education hack about it and she never answers any of his pertinent questions. Instead she keeps emphasizing parent choice but not whether that choice has produced results. I guess it's ok if parents choose to dumb down their children if they want? But shouldn't parents at least have the choice of being informed on the performance of the schools they send their children to? You know, so that they have the freedom to choose the better schools over the worse ones through competition?

Human Development Report 2016

Can be found here, published by the United Nations Development Program. (Also recall the World Happiness Report 2017.) From the Foreward:

"Human development is all about human freedoms: freedom to realize the full potential of every human life, not just of a few, nor of most, but of all lives in every corner of the world—now and in the future. Such universalism gives the human development approach its uniqueness."

From the Overview:

"The human development approach shifted the development discourse from pursuing material opulence to enhancing human well-being, from maximizing income to expanding capabilities, from optimizing growth to enlarging freedoms. It focused on the richness of human lives rather than on simply the richness of economies, and doing so changed the lens for viewing development results (box 2)."

Box 2: Measuring human development

Sanders on T-Swamp budget

Once again he points out all of the Biggest Swamp's campaign lies that are confirmed in his budget proposal. It's just a huge robbing of the poor and working families to the already rich and powerful. And it's right there in plain sight in the budget for all to see, if only they had the eyes or brains to see it. We must remember that budgets are a statement of moral values. Compare with The People's Budget by the Congressional Progressive Caucus. Now tell me who has the moral high ground here.

Eisenhower on the cost of war

Hartmann provides clips of former President Eisenhower, a Republican and former 5-star general in the Army, on how war takes food out of our mouths and education away from our children. He also warned us about the growing military-industrial complex, which has come to pass and will be further promoted by T-Swamp and the Republicans at our expense, meaning all the cuts to public programs in the new budget. Hartmann rightly says that he was the last Republican President with any integrity.

Carpool karaoke with Katy Perry

The latest in Corden's popular series. I do wish though that women would cut it out with the adolescent boy haircuts.

Senator Warren on T-Swamp's cuts to social security

The Biggest Swamp promised not to cut it. Now he is, by $73 billion over the next 10 years. It's right there in his budget.

Colbert on T-Swamp's budget

Fortunately he gets us to laugh at the horrors proposed in this latest budget, some of which he details. Ironically, the budget hits Swamp voters the hardest, but they'll never believe it being so programmed against factual evidence.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Rachel Maddow beats Fox in cable news ratings

Yep, for the first time in 21 years this is the case. With the popular O'Reilly gone the door has been opened and Maddow now sits on top of this ratings class. Hopefully it's a sign that at least the majority are becoming more inclined toward the truth in news programming.

Former CIA chief on Russian collusion

He left the CIA the day of the inauguration, January 20. He testified in the House Intelligence Committee that during his tenure “I encountered and am aware of information and intelligence that revealed contacts and interactions between Russian officials and U.S. persons involved in the Trump campaign. I was concerned because of known Russian efforts to suborn such individuals. And it raised questions in my mind again whether or not the Russians were able to gain the cooperation of those individuals.”

Chris Blue covers Rhythm Nation

Awesome performance last night on The Voice.

Jesse Larson's new single Woman

He's in the finals of The Voice and this is his new single. Awesome singing and guitar work. And as usual, the show has great production.

Rashad & Emma's freestyle

Rashad has come a long way and is much better. Granted he's not as good as Normani but he still deserves kudos for this excellent performance. He also contributed to a small part of the choreography.

Normani & Val's freestyle

Awesome performance last night for the finals. It even had Val crying at the end.

3 known leaks of Dakota Access Pipeline already

Yes, there have been 3 known incidents already, not to mention those that likely happened and have been covered up. Oh, but that simply can't happen we're told, the builders have taken every precaution for the safety of the people and the environment. Yeah, right. We'll keep hearing of more leaks and spills through alternative media, certainly not through lamestream corporate media.

CA Dem Party chair election rigged

As California goes, so goes the nation. And even in CA the establishment Dems refuse to accede power to the progressives that represent the majority of those who identify as Democrat, as well as the majority of voters in the US. The corporate Dems will give lip service to progressive populist issues but when the rubber hits the road they inevitable kowtow to their corporate and Wall Street masters. They may call for Party 'unity' but it's really just more lying spin to keep their status quo and keep the corporate funding (aka bribery) rolling in.

And of course they keep using the scare tactic that if progressives form a third Party they will just be handing all future elections to the conservatives. Remember who won in France's Presidential election, and that he went independent of the 2 major parties. And remember who won in the US, claiming to not be part of the 2-party swamp (even though he lied). The time has come for progressives to organize outside the Dem Party, as they really do have the majority of the US behind them.

Town halls challenge reps on climate change

Good compilation of such town halls from Yale Climate Connections. Such activism is sorely needed in these dire times, and we the people are getting busy. They rightly give deserved credit to the Indivisible movement for organizing a lot of that activism.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Warren on education budget cuts

She lays out the details of the Swamp budget proposal to gut public education. I guess swamp critters are not yet stupid enough that they need some extra help. Plus this budget will just produce more of the same to keep voting against their own, and our country's, best interests. The agenda is plain as day for those of us that still have a bit of brain and heart left.

Supreme Corp rules against NC gerrymandering

Wow, Clarence Thomas broke ranks with his conservative brethren in joined the progressives in the Court ruling that two districts in North Carolina gerrymandered along racial lines, a clear violation of the Constitution. The other 3 conservatives agreed in part and dissented in part, with Gorsuch sitting this one out. The entire opinion is linked in the article.

T-Swamp also tried to sway top intelligence officials

Yep, the Swamp also tried to obstruct justice by asking the national intelligence director and the director of the National Security Agency to make public statements refuting then FBI Director Comey's assertions of an investigation into Russian corruption. Both of course refused. The treasonous plot thickens by the day.

T-Swamp prepares for voodoo economics

Here he is worshiping the Saudi magic orb, consistent with the economic policies he wants to impose on us.

A reminder from Senator Warren

Also remember that in building that business they used a lot more of our public resources than any individual. So their taxes should be higher to pay their fair share of that use which  helped in their success. But that's one thing conservatives never consider, thinking it's a right to use those resources that someone else paid for. It's theft if they don't pay for it accordingly. But stealing from the poor to pay the rich has always been part of their ideology.

Commerce Secretary admires Saudi Arabia

Wilbur Ross actually praised them, saying he saw no sign of protests when he and T-Swamp visited there. He failed to mentioned that Saudis behead protesters. It is one of the most repressive countries in the world headed by autocrats, so we can see why both he and the Swamp love that country and want to turn the US into that sort of regime.

T-Swamp budget proves he's the Biggest Liar

T-Swamp will propose to cut Medicaid by $800 billion, which he promised not to cut. This will slash 10 million low-income people from coverage. There will also be cuts to food stamps and social security. He is proving on a daily basis that he truly is the Biggest Liar in the World. I suppose he has to be the best at something.

Reich on the Dem establishment

In this FB post, commenting on this article, he said that the Party establishment still hasn't learned from past elections, including the last one. They are still refusing to fight for the things progressives, and the majority of the country, want: single-payer universal healthcare, free public higher education, higher taxes on the wealthy to pay for public programs, and campaign finance reforms. They think that they can just be anti-T-Swamp. How did that work out for you last time idiots? The Party is lost and beyond repair.

Notre Dame graduates walk out on VP Pence

Bravo to these conscientious students with conviction and spine. They are the future of our country.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Drunk uncle

A favorite SNL skit lampooning how a typical conservative acts when he's drunk. It starts around 1:40.

SNL weekend update on T-Swamp

Covering the facts with humor.

Beyond point-and-shoot morality

See Greene's paper here. Therein he said: 

"We should distrust our automatic settings and rely more on manual mode when attempting to resolve practical moral disagreements. So far, so palatable. But where does this lead? I believe it favors consequentialist approaches to moral problem solving, ones aimed solely at promoting good consequences, rather than deontological approaches aimed at figuring out who has which rights and duties, where these are regarded as constraints on the promotion of good consequences. More specifically, I believe that reliance on manual mode favors act consequentialism at the level of first principles and something resembling rule consequentialism in everyday practice. As private individuals, we should nearly always respect the conventional moral rules, but in establishing those rules as voters and policy makers we should aim simply for the best long-term consequences."

T-Swamp and critters open SNL

Singing the classic song Hallelujah.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Far right radicalization

The far right, like T-Swampers, are using the same tactics as ISIS. And like ISIS they are using online services like Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to spread their hatred, racism and xenophobia. Breitbart and InfoWars are a few of the more popular outlets. Their goal is to attract the the disaffected, those who have little to no education, employment opportunities or training, thus severely limiting their life opportunities. They are ripe to fill the void of their lives by blaming everyone else for their situation, incited by violent rhetoric that leads them in that direction. Homegrown ISIS right in our midst.

Colbert on T-Swamp's first overseas trip

First stop, Saudi Arabia, where the Swamp wants to unite the Arab world by giving a speech on radical Islam! And the speech is being drafted by Steven Miller, the guy who influenced the first Muslim ban! Yeah, something tells me this winning combination is just what we need to bring peace. Things don't look much better for the Israel or the Pope visits.

Maher and West get into it

Over Clinton v. T-Swamp and the relative difference between 2 evils. A good heated exchange. I'm with Maher on this one.

World Happines Report 2017

The main factors that support happiness: caring, freedom, generosity, honesty, health, income and good governance. Six key variables of happiness: income, healthy life expectancy, having someone to count on in times of trouble, generosity, freedom and trust, with the latter measured by the absence of corruption in business and government. The full report on various countries can be found here. The top 10. Just maybe the US can learn something from these countries? Nah...

1. Norway
2. Denmark
3. Iceland
4. Switzerland
5. Finland
6. Netherlands
7. Canada
8. New Zealand
9. Australia and Sweden tied

The problem with superheroes

Good New Rule on how all this superhero shit in media trains us to not take responsibility for ourselves, instead hoping someone with great powers will come to our rescue. It is basically inculcating us into passive acceptance that we don't have the power to change our lives. Hence why T-Swamp was so popular, as only he could fix it all for us. He even told us he could.

I don't know it for a fact

I just know it's true. Another installment of Maher's popular series, making fun of how conservatives don't base their worldview on facts.

Maher's monologue

As usual, he updates the political news with humor.

Friday, May 19, 2017

More inside info on conversation with Russians in the Oval Office

See this report in which the Biggest Loser told the Russians: "I just fired the head of the F.B.I. He was crazy, a real nut job. I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.” This came from notes taken inside the Oval Office that were circulated as the official account of the meeting.

The implications and explications of the fold

This is part of my exploration of the fold in this IPS thread. Bruce and I had this conversation today.

Bruce: Given Bryant's appeal to autopoiesis, a comparative look at Bryant and Thompson might be worthwhile.

Me: Bryant includes Brown's unmarked space as one example of the real excess beyond our access. In the beginning of Thompson's video he mentions Buddhist emptiness, but only in the context of relational dependent arising.

Bruce: Wilber uses Brown too, but in a more Idealist fashion, of course.

Me: It doesn't appear he [Thompson] includes this excess beyond relations. And yet Bryant has lately turned into a correlationist.

Bruce: With his fold model?

Me: Even before that.

Bruce: Maybe a weak correlationist, reading it as co-relation?

Me: Seems that way.

Bruce: That's in line with Buddhist emptiness (in one of its iterations)

Me: That's Thompson's pitch.
Bruce: I think Bryant may not grok how much he skirts around a Buddhist view.


Yes, it's an intentional misspelling. I wish I'd come up with it but I didn't. I first heard it used by Joe Corbett. This meme highlights it's absurd premise.


Styles performed from his debut solo album last night on Corden.

Carpool karaoke with Harry Styles

The next installment in this popular Corden series.

Sanders on the Russian investigation

Which includes Comey's firing, asking Comey to drop the Flynn investigation and revealing classified info to the Russians in the White House. Sanders puts this in the context of T-Swamp's man crush on Putin. Both are oligarchic authoritarians, their common love bond. Hence T-Swamp's daily moves toward transforming the US into a Russia-like dictatorship. How the Congress, the FBI and the special prosecutor proceed in this investigation will determine if we are to retain any semblance of democracy in the US.

Experience as transcendental prerequisite

Continuing the last post, Bitbol agrees with Thompson that conscious experience of something is prerequisite to studying something scientifically. And this prerequisite is neither a purely subjective nor objective affair, but an "inextricably united experience-of-a-world out of which the usual duality are differentiated" (17). Thereafter he discusses neurophenomenology.

Bitbol on pure experience

I came upon this Michel Bitbol talk on 'pure experience.' It goes along with Thompson's section on the primacy of consciousness in this post. But are they the same, different, or some combination? There are also some suggested readings in the description below the video. One of those references is Bitbol's paper "Is consciousness primary?" The abstract:

"Six arguments against the view that conscious experience derives from a material basis are reviewed. These arguments arise from epistemology, phenomenology, neuropsychology, and philosophy of quantum mechanics. It turns out that any attempt at proving that conscious experience is ontologically secondary to material objects both fails and brings out its methodological and existential primacy. No alternative metaphysical view is espoused (not even a variety of Spinoza’s attractive double-aspect theory). Instead, an alternative stance, inspired from F. Varela’s neurophenomenology, is advocated."

Colbert on the Comey memo

Therein T-Swamp also asked Comey to imprison reporters, not just back off the Flynn investigation. Meanwhile, cowardly Republicans are being complicit in this obstruction by avoiding the issue altogether.

VP Pence knew about Flynn too

In this piece it notes that the Democrats on the House Oversight Committee wrote a letter in November of last year to the T-Swamp transition team warning of Flynn's involvement with Turkey. Pence was heading the transition team. The letter was confirmed received by the campaign. Despite Pence's denials he knew about this when he claimed he did not. He's going down with the Swamp too, because their whole Administration is the Biggest Swamp in the History of the World. Heh, just using T-Swamp's own rhetoric against him.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Star Trek: Discovery

The promo for the new series coming this Fall. But WTF, it's on pay-tv!

T-Swamp and his critters lied about Russian communications

This article discusses a Reuters story that said the T-Swamp campaign had "at least 18 calls and emails during the last seven months of the 2016 presidential race” with Russia. This despite the Swamp denying any contact whatsoever. The article provides the details. A treason charge and impeachment are well on their way.

New Time cover says it all

About who is really running the US.

NATO has to childproof for T-Swamp's visit

Colbert continues about this topic. The White House is sending memos to NATO on how to make presentations to the Swamp given his notoriously short attention span and lack of adult comprehension. It's amazing that the not just the US but the rest of the world now has to cater to a spoiled child-King.

Colbert won't "let it go"

He comments on T-Swamp telling Comey to "let it go," meaning the Russia investigation involving Flynn. Colbert just can't do it either, thankfully.

Kim Jong-Un's commencement speech

Not too far off from the T-Swamp's own recent commencement speech.

Senator Warren challenges Treasury Secretary over Glass-Steagall

Warren notes that Secretary Mnuchin, along with the (notmy)President, supported a 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act. The original act separated the type of banks that loaned money from those that did speculative investment. It's demise was a direct cause of the financial meltdown.  So Mnuchin replies that he never supported the original Act but does support this purportedly new one because it does not have that separation. Needless to say, Warren is aghast and calls him out repeatedly over this sorry excuse of a new Act that not only does nothing to prevent another financial crisis but to the contrary encourages yet another one. Apparently the new Act just uses the same name as the old one to give a false impression that it's doing something to solve the problem while doing the opposite.

Why did Dems lost their asses in the last election

Good article on what Dem pollsters have found on the issue. A significant % of former Obama voters either voted for the Swamp, someone else like the Green Party, or sat out the election. Why? Dem economic policies favored the wealthy and not the lower classes. For some it was more a matter of voting against Clinton, who was rightly perceived as being a Wall Street lackey. So the pollsters concluded that Dems need to be better at messaging to this demographic.

Yeah, but they also have to be sincere about it with actual policy implementation. It does no good to say the words is we know you don't believe them. Clinton talked the talk and we didn't believe her. What the Dems really need is to elect actual progressives with a proven track record over history of walking the talk. They had that chance with Sanders and they did everything to thwart him. Same with the new DNC head, muscling out the progressive Ellison and installing the same kind of corporate Dem in Perez we don't trust. Dems need to get real about this or get out of the way.

T-Swamp is the same old tyrant he's always been

Here's Reich FB post on this article. The Swamp's entire history is one of being a con man. He screwed over contractors, business partners and creditors while violating laws constantly. His bankruptcies mounted to the point that no American banks would do business with him anymore, so he sought out loans from Russian banks. "Over the years, Trump has been the focus of investigations on housing discrimination, bribery, corruption, dealings with the mob, misleading earnings reports, fraud, and improper campaign contributions, and sexual predation."

So it's no surprise he continues to operate this way in the White House and is destroying the good name of that high office. Let's hope that the Republicans have the moral constitution to prosecute this most fetid of all Swamps.

Fact v. fiction

I know, it's hard to tell in this post-truth, fake news world. So here's some real news for you.

T-Swamp is the worst (not my) President

In fact, the worse ever. Intercept podcast, transcript coming soon. Their blurb:

"Donald Trump is spectacularly bad at being president. Maybe the most extreme allegations about him are true: he is a Russian asset, compromised, taking orders from Moscow. He definitely is hiding all sorts of information about his finances. Regardless, it is clear he is wildly incompetent with no interest in even trying to understand his current job or the rules that govern it. Or maybe, Donald Trump is just an idiot. This week on Intercepted, investigative journalist Marcy Wheeler and The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald analyze the latest insanity emanating from the White House. Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Tim Weiner and Intercept writer Trevor Aaronson discuss the firing of James Comey and debate his FBI legacy. And Palestinian author and journalist Rula Jebreal explains why President Trump is going to Saudi Arabia and Israel on his first international trip."

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Damasio on consciousness

Continuing this theme, here's an 18-minute Ted Talk on the topic by Antonio Damasio.

Short Thompson video on neurophenomenology

An easier bite to chew on.

The Comey memo

It turns out that ousted FBI Director Comey wrote and circulated a memo on a 2/14/17 meeting with T-Swamp wherein the later asked Comey to quit investigating former National Security Adviser Flynn. That is of course obstruction of justice. This was after a previous meeting on 1/27/17 where T-Swamp asked Comey to pledge his loyalty during the Russian investigation, again obstruction of justice. Will the Republicans investigate this? Sure they will (not).

Colbert on T-Swamp bragging about secrets

His monologue covers this and inviting the top Russian spy into the Oval Office.

T-Swamp reveals other classified secrets

Colbert makes fun of the Biggest Braggart.

Neurophenomenology for laymen

Following up on the last post, this article is more of a layman's introduction to neurophenomenology. It's only about a 15-minute easy read. If one wants to get geeky like me they can watch the previous video and read some of the references in the bibliography.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The Nature of Consciousness: A Neurophenomenological Approach

Evan Thompson, professor of philosophy, University of British Columbia, delivers the keynote address for the Mind & Emptiness conference held at Dartmouth April 28 & 29, 2017. LECTURE BEGINS AT 6min.51sec. It's my preferred approach to the topic, along with Damasio, Lakoff and a few others. The outlined topics: the primacy of consciousness; the problem with physicalism; not quite panpsychism; the primacy of embodiment; neurophenomenology.

WTF is wrong with Americans

In a word: T-Swamp.

Voter suppression expert appointed to 'voter integrity' project

Talk about opposite world. Greg Palast did a detailed investigative report on Kansas Secretary of State Kobach's Interstate Cross-Check program. That program purged 1.1 million from the voter roles in the last election. E.g., T-Swamp won by about 10,700 votes in Michigan, yet some 50,000 people of color were purged from voting there. So in typical fashion T-Swamp appoints him to lead a new 'voter integrity' commission to investigate voter fraud, when in fact the opposite is true: Koback is the fraud. Without such suppression the Swamp never would have won.

Intelligence community on the T-Swamp leak

Yes, the President can declassify intelligence. But as noted before, this is typically done with consultation with the intelligence community for specific purposes. T-Swamp's cavalier treatment of the intelligence has caused other countries to withhold sharing intelligence with the US if it's going to be in the hands of such an idiot. And still the Republicans will not move on impeaching this travesty.

NATO prepares for T-Swamp

NATO is well aware of the Swamp's childish developmental level and is preparing accordingly. This clip provides quotes on just how they are preparing. What does this say about the US, that we'd elect a petulant child as President? And just a reminder for those Bernie Bros that refused to vote for Clinton and who tipped the election. NATO would not be preparing this way for her.

Colbert on T-Swamp revealing highly classified intelligence

To the Russians, in the Oval Office, with only Russian media to report. Seems we found the White House leaker. Yes, it's 'legal' for the President to do so, but typically it would be with full consultation of the Security Council with a strategic purpose. But T-Swamp did so out of pure narcissism and endangered the source of the intelligence as well as the operation by giving information that could easily lead to that source and operation. He's not only an idiot but a traitor.

Simone & Sasha

This is her perfect score Rumba, which followed her perfect score jive. And yet she was voted off last night while that clumsy baseball dude goes to the finals? It's not just that they give equal weight to the ignorant public's vote, which is bad enough. But it's also the judges fault, giving Simone less than perfect scores most of the time because they hold her to a higher standard. Meanwhile, those dancers with less expectations get inflated scores. If it weren't for all the excellent dancing I wouldn't watch this corrupt popularity contest.

To skip the package and go right to the dance it starts at 3:15.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Lakoff on consciousness and the unconscious

Interesting talk. It goes to about 7:03 and then repeats.

Another study on liberal/conservative prejudice

Here's another recent article on the parity of prejudice among liberals and conservatives. However:

"There’s an argument to be made that conservative intolerance does more harm than liberal intolerance, as it targets more vulnerable people. Consider the earlier list of groups maligned by liberals and conservatives. Rich people, Christians, men, whites and the police would generally seem to have more power today than immigrants, gays, blacks, poor people and goths."


"Robbie Sutton, a psychologist at the University of Kent in England, presented preliminary findings at SPSP that touch on the issue of which intolerance is more justifiable. He found that people who endorsed denialist conspiracy theories about climate change were more likely than those who endorsed warmist conspiracy theories to want to censor, surveil and punish climate scientists, whereas warmists were more likely than denialists to want to punish and surveil climate change skeptics. But are these sentiments equally harmful? Many people would say that’s a subjective question, but it’s hard to ignore the evidence, for instance, that Exxon has hidden its knowledge of climate change for years, and the fact that that the current Republican administration has placed new restrictions on Environmental Protection Agency scientists. Who is more vulnerable, and backed by scientific evidence: Exxon or environmental researchers?"

Supreme Corp gets one right

Yes, it's an intentional misspelling indicative of the High Court's usual rulings in favor of corporations over people. It will continue to do so with their new corporatist Gorsuch. They did however get this one right in refusing to hear the challenge against the 4th Circuit Appeals Court decision that overturned the North Carolina voter suppression legislation. The 4th Circuit found the NC law acted “with almost surgical precision” to disenfranchise black voters. So that ruling stands, defeating NC's racist law, a win for democracy.

Pew study on liberal/conservative views on climate science

Continuing the last few posts, I do not dispute the findings of the studies in the New Scientist article. The meta-analysis of 41 studies admits that those tested were self-identified as liberal or conservative. While overall bias was about the same for both types, it also admitted that some methodological features moderated the overall bias, as well as it being modified by different political topics.

Using the topic of climate science as one topical example, this Pew study first of all divided up political affiliation into 4 categories: liberal Dems, conservative Reps, and moderate Dems and moderate Reps. This is more aligned with Lakoff that some people are biconceptual, meaning liberal on some issues and conservative on others. Even so, only 55% of liberal Dems think climate scientists use the best available scientific evidence to support the research. Granted it's the highest % in that category, but still indicates there's plenty of self-identified liberal Dems that are not that science-savvy.

There are also some stats on those with scientific knowledge. Dems with high science knowledge agree that the earth is warming due to human influence, see scientists as having a firm understanding of climate change, and trust those scientists about its cause. But Republicans with high science knowledge are no more or less likely to agree with those statements. Their ideology trumps science.

It's also interesting to see how scientists identify politically in this Pew study. What does this tell us?  

New Scientist article

In the Meetup ground from the last post, this New Scientist article was cited claiming both liberals and conservatives equally have the same level of confirmation bias. Indeed, liberals are dismissive of conservative claims on gun control, climate change and abortion because liberals present the scientific facts on those issues. To call that confirmation bias on the same order as conservative explanations for those same issues is ludicrous.

And of course we must differentiate educated liberals from ignorant ones. There are plenty of ignorant people that identify as liberals who are more prone to confirmation bias. But where are the progressive ideas coming from?

Which moral judgments are better?

We must make moral value judgments about what's better for society. We decided that slavery was antithetical to a democracy as but one example. Another is that an authoritarian regime is antithetical to a democracy. Another is that implementing climate science is better for the very survival of the human species than continuing fossil fuel use. It's fair game to do so when comparing liberal and conservative world views, using science, of course. Science itself must make these value judgments instead of sitting idly on the sidelines.

Yes, there is plenty of woo woo on the liberal side, like anti-vacination, anti-GMO and far out conspiracy theories. It too has its confirmation biases. But I or others in this Meetup 'in-group' have yet to espouse that sort of liberal nonsense. Our focus is supporting our claims with science. So yes, in that sense we are biased toward the scientific method of validation, but that's a good thing. And no, I've seen scientific studies that show liberals are indeed more open to changing their confirmation bias when presented with new facts and evidence.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Lakoff speaking at Indivisible East Bay

This talk makes clear that Lakoff espouses progressive values because they are the foundation of democracy. Without them we do not have democracy. Conservative values are all about authoritarianism, oligarchy and control via the elimination of democracy. While framing is important, what is even more important is to what framing is applied. This is a very real battle to save democracy from irreparable damage, if not outright extinction from the US.

California leads the US economy

Because it does things that T-Swamp and the Republicans say can't work, yet it does better than any other US State and most countries. It's a living testament to progressive policies that make a better life for most of its citizens. E.g., it is 1/7 of the US GDP. "Much of the U.S. growth can be traced to California laws promoting clean energy, government accountability and protections for undocumented people." See the article for many details on CA performance. The Swamp should learn from success, but that would require they are capable of learning. We've seen that they are not.

Dutch documentary on T-Swamp's financial ties to Russia

Zembla produced this investigative report and went where no US news organization dares to go. It details T-Swamp's financial ties to Russian oligarchs and mafia. Why haven't we heard any of this from US media? Please circulate far and wide.

McCarthy does Spicer again on SNL

SNL: T-Swamp's interview with Lester Holt

Alec Baldwin returns to parody the latest T-Swamp disaster.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

The dual-process brain

Continuing this post, in this paper Greene describes the dual-process brain, the fast automatic setting and the slower manual mode. From the conclusion:

"Our brains, like all complex functional systems, face a tradeoff between efficiency and flexibility. To promote efficiency, our brains have point-and-shoot automatic settings in the form of intuitive emotional responses. These are marvelous, but nonetheless limited in what they can do. In particular, we should not expect them to perform well in the face of peculiarly modern problems, ones with which we have inadequate genetic, cultural, and individual experience. Many of the most important moral problems we face may be of this kind" (48).

I'd suggest climate change is but one of those challenges. And it will only be obstructed by those science-denying conservative automatons instead of acknowledged and addressed. If we don't do the later via those manual mode scientists we very likely will not have a human future whatsoever. And that ain't no hyperbolic automatic exaggeration but hard scientific fact. And oh yeah, a moral judgment based thereon.

Maher interviews Congressman Schiff on losing our democracy

They discuss the difference between democracy and authoritarianism. We are fast losing the former and even faster degenerating into the latter. And the T-Swamp is larger responsible for that acceleration.