/ Journal /
1985 – 1997
|Id Intros||Scant Tech Style
I started writing By the Hair of the Comet in 1982. By 1983 I had fled my betraying patron and was writing in my car, Florida to NY. My brother in law loaned me a C64. Renting a room in Orlando I made a sale or two and bought a Tandy 102. By 1985 my chances of selling Comet seemed zero, but I could’t stop writing. Feeling betrayed by the artist Marcel, I betrayed her by buying a Toshiba lap top. Finally I had up to date equipment, my own file sizes too could grow, amazing.
So: my Comet was in my head, in sheaves of hand-written pages, on the Tandy, on C64 floppies: then much bigger files on 5″ disks, but nothing like we do now, especially online.
Id files 00, 1985, 1986 dates fuzzy
digital notebook: C64 (borrowed from Don Baker, brother in law, and Tandy 102
2016 04 19 revisiting 1985
Some spell checking, but spelling largely ignored, some line breaks added, but mostly data, little meta data
I should have signaled sense by capitalizing sentences, I will add some line breaks.
In the most sceptical heart there lurks at such moments, when the chances of existence are involved, a desire to leave a correct impression of the feelings, like a light by which the action may be seen when personality is gone, gone where no light of investigation can ever reach the truth which every death takes out of the world.
Conrad, Nostromo p 196
Decoud writing to his sister, pausing neither to eat nor drink,
while the revolution is crashing the world about his ears.
(Someday I may digitize the handwritten notes of earlier years that spiritually, if not technologically, belong with this series.)
music reading, playing lots of flute
Andy Mackay: “It has been said that the only thing to be said about the music of the future is that is hasn’t happened yet”
Yehudi Menuhin: “The beauty of music lies in part in its placement at a point equidistant between reality and abstraction”
The composer “sculpts” time.
1 4 1: plagal
1 5 1: major or minor
“Human beings need beauty as much as order and meaning.”
Beyond mystery and wonder is the perception of structure, of relationships, of metarelationships.
Difference of perspective on ordinary standards and rules of behavior, justice, etc. for the two genders in their traditional and probable experiences of the last several thousand years. Tyranny and nursing go together in a closed society, ie home, an impregnable country, etc. A woman, a mother will protect with her own life but insist on the power to abuse. It generally works for the best (or we couldn’t be here), but not always.
Viable social systems don’t have to be “true”, just beneficial in a sufficient number of cases, maybe an overwhelming majority of cases, but not in all cases.
cf open society. cf wilderness.
Any hypothesis is good: until you test it. How about postulates? Any tautology with postulates false to fact, structure, relationships simply won’t work. What danger can it be?
The penalties for not participating in the crimes of your society are very severe. Study society as a cybernetic model and then try to understand law, mores, rights, history, etc. Laws are not better than the men observing or controlling them. Their only effective meaning is what’s practiced. laws of faith: conservation; entropy. Expand college perception of candles, to matter, to matter/energy, to all, to God.
People can hear the same sound (within some narrow threshold of difference in ear mechanism, etc., the quality of the organs, the tuning of the brain, etc. but cannot hear the same music. Music is a product of the left side of the brain interpreting, using its neurological potential and a complex set of experiences and postulates to interpret the sound shape and articulate into parts the overall sound shape that the right perceives. Now the differences exponentiate. The interplay can never duplicate. No two people bring the same experience to bear on the sorting and interdepartmental communication.
A E van Vogt The Weapon Shop: “The very cunning of it made it vital that the trick shouldn’t succeed”
wonderful story, case where reversing sympathies (cf Comet) clearly works. Inside out: the conventional, the secure, meets the alien, the risk taking. Unperceiving meets superior perception (and hates it until rock bottom is hit). Infantile fantasy of the powerless becoming threatening (cf Rambo II’s failure: threatening is all he became. He slaughters the gooks and the slaves wholesale but when he met wishy-washy middle-management, all he killed was the table.)
“You belong in the Imperial Services, where they can use young men of good education, good appearance and no scruples”
“We want a general improvement in business morals, not merely more skillful scheming to outwit us”
“Ugly with the ugliness of evil enthroned”
Elmore Leonard’s Split Images
“You want to be civil for a while or go crazy right away?” cf “Do it right” in the Emerald Forest. It’s wonderful when dialogue shows a second layer of consciousness, of logical type, level of abstraction. Awareness of metapattern, ritual. cf Tom Jones-the movie’s “Did you see her take it?”
Brian asked her how you could tell what was necessary from what wasn’t until you did it.
ElLeo voc: bicho; spazzed out on ganja; hooyek; cocha (female);
This guy’s comped to the eyeballs, the whole shot
… the dumb glazed look of a guy who had conditioned himself to go through life pissed off.
L Thomas says health care industry costs $140 billion a year.
Life and death. annihilation of information: clean slate, new beginning. think on big bang: are there no unities in the vacuum which are preserved in an oscillating universe? Unities that ‘must’ be preserved?
6 Oct 85 Notes
CLOCK: any perceived regularity, especially a cosmic regularity against which other more variable events may be compared, mapped, or measured. The phases of the moon, positions of constellations, of the Sun, etc.
QUOTES:”We still brew good, like we used to could.”
“As I imagined, so it was.” Defoe
“Anteater: The reason is that the meaning which you attribute to any passive symbol, such as a word on a page, actually derives from the meaning which is carried by corresponding active symbols in your brain. So that the meaning of passive symbols can only be properly understood when it is related to the meaning of active symbols.” Ant Fugue
“In terms of the fulfillment of declared intentions, science is incomparably the most successful enterprise human beings have ever engaged upon.” P. B. Medawar in The Limits of Science.
“Another curious aspect of the theory of evolution is that everybody thinks he understands it.” Jacques Monod in his Herbert Spencer lecture as quoted by Richard Dawkins in Selfish Genes and Selfish Memes. The evolution of the capacity to simulate seems to have culminated in subjective consciousness … Perhaps consciousness arises when the brain’s simulation of the world becomes so complete that it must include a model of itself.” ibid.
Hoyle: Control from the future always preserves consistency. quotes Erwin Schrodinger: “I don’t like it, and I’m sorry to think that I ever had anything to do with it.” The trouble we can now see with most of the fundamental questions about life and the origin of the Universe is that they are asked back-to-front.
Hoyle quotes George Wald: We living things are a late outgrowth of the metabolism of our galaxy. The carbon and oxygen that enter so importantly into our composition were cooked in the remote past in a dying star. From them at lower temperatures nitrogen was formed. These, our indispensable elements, were spewed out into space in the exhalations of red giant [stars] and in such stellar catastrophes as supernovae, there to be mixed with hydrogen, to form eventually the substance of the Sun and planets, and ourselves. The waters of ancient seas set the pattern of ions in our blood. The ancient atmospheres molded our metabolism.
We have been told so often and on such tremendous authority as to seem to put it beyond question, that the essence of things must remain forever hidden from us: that we must stand forever outside nature, like children with their noses pressed against the glass, able to look in, but unable to enter. This concept of our origins encourages another view of the matter. We are looking at it from inside. Its history is our history: its stuff, our stuff. From that realization we can take some assurance that what we see is real.
Judging from our experience on this planet, such a history, that begins with elementary particles, leads perhaps inevitably toward a strange and moving end: a creature that knows, a science-making animal, that turns back upon the process that generated him and attempts to understand it. Without his like, the universe could be, but not be known, and that is a poor thing.
Surely this is a great part of our dignity as men and women, that we can know, and that through us matter can know itself: that beginning with protons and electrons, out of the womb of time and the vastness of space, we can begin to understand: that organized as in us, the hydrogen, the carbon, the nitrogen, the oxygen, those 16 to 21 elements, the water, the sunlight-all, having become us, can begin to understand what they are, and how they came to be.
Galbraith: Technology means the systematic application of scientific or other organized knowledge to practical tasks. Its most important consequence, at least for the purpose of economics, is in forcing the division or subdivision of any such task into its component parts.
Commoner: In popular imagery the technologist is often seen as a modern wizard, a kind of scientific sorcerer. It now appears that he is less sorcerer than sorcerer’s apprentice.
When you get a TELESCOPE, concentrate on resolving power! 6-8″ is good. An 8″ Celestron telescope costs around $1,000.
in Greek, gramma means a letter of the alphabet. Hence gram and grammar, etc.
ACRONYM laser = light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation
WINTER SOLSTICE: Romans celebrated Saturnalia then. Persian sun deity Mithras’s birth was celebrated on
Dec 25. Xity stole his thunder with Xmas.
Kathleen Ferrier sings Gluck’s Orpheus.
middle C on the piano has a frequency of 264 vps. range of piano is 27.5 vps to 4,224 vps.
Middle C, do-264; re-297; mi-330; fa-352; sol-396; la (A)-440; ti-495; do-528; re-594; mi-660; fa-704; sol-792; la-880; ti-990; do-1056
CHORDS: C: Cars Eat Gas; 6th A, 7th B, 9th D, Rock 4th F
D: DeeF And Dumb; 6th B, 7th C#, 9th E, Rock 4th G
Eb; Flat EGBert; 6th C, 7th D, 9th F, Rock 4th Ab
F: FAC-Fuzz; 6th D, 7th E, 9th G, Rock 4th Bb
G: Great Britain’s Deutsche Grammophone; 6th E, 7th F#, 9th A, Rock 4th C
A: ACE-A; 6th F#, 7th G#, 9th B, Rock 4th D
Bb: BbDF-Bea’s flat on the Dark Floor; 6th G, 7th A, 9th C, Rock 4th Eb
Ab: AbCEb-A’s flat in Crazy Eddie’s flat; 6th F, 7th G, 9th Bb, Rock 4th Db
Marcel Moyse. Le Debutant Flutiste——.
De la Sonorite’Taffanel and Gaubert.
Methode Complete de la Flute
SCIENCE: Mac Note (from early 1990s): who knows what happened to the formatting here: check against hard copy, or discard.
Age of cosmos as of 1985 settled around 13,500 millions equivalent of E years.
End of Cretaceous c. 67 million yrs ago.
1 c-km =1,000,000 light-millimeters
1 c-mm =1,000,000 light-millimicrons
1 c.mmicron =1,000,000 light-fermis
a light-fermi is the time required for light to travel from one end of a proton to the other.
=10 to the minus five seconds
3.33 c-mm=10 to the minus eleven seconds 3.33 c-mmicrons
=10 to the minus seventeen seconds3.33 c-fermis
=10 to the minus twenty-three seconds
ENTROPY: of course, negentropy still has to be fuelled by entropy. Still local examples proliferte. The above need not be true IF the future can influence the past (see Hoyle). And what about Maxwell’s reciprocal equations?
How about the Big Bang? Would the vacuum before the BB be a closed system? Open? An example of entropy, negentropy, or neither? See Hoyle’s denial of entropy and his skepticism about there having been any big bang.from William Poundstone’s The Recursive Universe: The molecules in a liter of gas are always moving, so the microstate of such a system is always changing, even when the macrostate is not… . The entropy of a macrostate is defined by its number of microstates-the number of arrangements. p 59. Not only does location of the molecule cost energy, he showed, but also increased information about the molecule’s position is always canceled out by an increase in entropy. Entropy, in turn, is ignorance at the molecular level.
ELECTROMAGNETIC SPECTRUM: ‘ 0 v, lambda would approach infinity
practical range is 30,000,000 km down to 0.0001 angstrom units.
1 km = 10 to the twelve angstrom units.
1 angstrom unit = one ten-thousandth of a micron. 1 micron = 1 ten-thousandth of a centimeter.
6 1/2 octaves
visible light rays
1 (7600 angstrom units to 3800 angstrom uits)ultraviolet rays
two thirds of the octaves are longer wave and therefore less energetic than light. Width of standard tv channel is 4 megacycles. Each octave up doubles the number of possible channels. There is 2 to the 22 more room in light than in the octave normally used for tv.
400,-475,000000 orange 63-5900
475-510 million yellow 59-5600
510-540 million green 56-4900
540-615 million blue 49-4500
615-670 million violet 35-3800
AGE of universe: 10 to 20 billion years.
AGE of solar system: 4 to 5 billion, say 4.6.
AGE of life: roughly 2.5 billion years.
For view of end of universe, see Pagels, p 319.
CONVERSIONS AND EQUIVALENTS: hectar = 100 acres = 10,000 sq.km.3 miles = 4.83 km.
decastere = 10 cubic m.myriameter = 10,000 m.
mega means milllion, eg. megameter=1 mil.m1 kilometer =0.6214 milel kilometer = 1,093 yards1 megagram = 2205 pounds aka: metric ton or tonne1 long ton = 2240 pounds
ORDERS OF MAGNITUDE:
tera- (from Greek teras “monster”
giga- (gigas “giant”)
mega- (megas “great”)
micro- (mikros “small”) micrometer aka. micron
nano- (nanos “dwarf”)
atto-Johnny Von Neumann’s concept of a “universal constructor.
Timothy Ferris’ address: The Earth, the Solar System, The Sun’s Neighborhood, Vicinity of the Orion Arm, The Milky Way Galaxy, the Local Group of Galaxies, the Local Supercluster, the Universe, circa eighteen billion years after the beginning of its (hypothesized) expansion.
RESEARCH (writing Comet): where is galactic north relative to Earth’s north?
10 to the 12 cells in a human body
5-100 microns in diameter.
DNA in one cell contains plus or minus 10 to the 10 bits of information.
Polymers: Starch: is a long string of glucose (C6H12O6) molecules. Cellulose: ditto, differently and more strongly linked. Mitochondria: intracellular energy exchangers including photosynthesis in plants and respiration. Enzymes: proteins which effectively control the speed of chemical reactions.
Optical isomerism: any structure has a mirror image which bears a likeness to the original in that compound parts are similarly related within each of the structures. In the case of an asymmetric structure the mirror image has a left-to-right transformation that cannot be reproduced by any rotation of the original structure. So the original structure and its mirror image are not identical in the same way that a right hand is not identical to a left hand. L-Glycine and D-Glycine are mirror images of each other. Ditto D-Glyceraldehyde and L-Glyceraldehyde, two sugars.
All amino acids and all sugars have distinct D- and L- forms. The physical and chemical properties of the individual D- and L- forms are identical. They differ only in the direction in which they rotate the plane of a beam of plane polarized light. Hence the term optical isomer, L referring to left-handed rotation (Levrorotary) and D referring to right-handed rotation (Dextrorotary). Yet this apparently minor difference assumes a profound importance in biochemistry. Almost all amino acids extracted from natural proteins are of the L-form and all naturally occurring polysaccharides have D-sugars. The sugar in nucleic acids is always d-Ribose. (racemus, Lt. bunch of grapes) A racemic mixture of molecules (such as found in laboratory organic soups and in the distribution of amino acids in meteorites) is optically inactive in the sense that it cannot rotate the plane of polarized light.
Hoyle quotes George Wald quoting Einstein: “They won the fight.”
R. Clausius named entropy 1850 and 1854
A. Brillouin named negentropy as alternate to “ectropy.”
from Medawar: Self-limitation of growth: if a three-dimensional body grows in size without change in shape, its surface area increases as the square of a linear dimension while its volume or mass increases as the cube.
Law of Conservation of Information: No process of logical reasoning can enlarge the information content of the axioms and premises or observation statements from which it proceeds.
Deduction merely makes explicit information that is already there.
“A lay interest in matters to do with liturgical procedure is invariably a prelude to insanity.” P. G. Wodehouse’s Sir Roderick Glossop.
What is Le Chatelier’s theorum?s.
J. Gould “Scientists are trained to avoid such special pleading because it exerts a chilling stupefying effect upon hypotheses, by rendering them invulnerable to test and potential disproof. Doing is the soul of science and we reject hypotheses that condemn us to impotence.” What hubris. cf Medawar on ultimate questions. Scientists shunning such situations has no bearing on the truth of the hypothesis. I’ve just heard Darwinian natural selection accused of the same untestability. That doesn’t stop Gould from hanging his career on it. Neither do better arguments or better hypotheses. It also seems to me that the degree to which familiar ultimate answers are testable is regularly misstated. Many theological explanations may not be testable but their spin offs are. The Bible, or Koran for example, would be full of testable spin offs.
Henry James’ The Portrait: “Money’s a horrid thing to follow, but a charming thing to meet.”
-The Countess had an answer for everything, and if she lied she lied well.-“She hates me, and her way of showing it is to pretend to be for ever defending me.”
-She envied Ralph his dying, for if one were thinking of rest that was the most perfect of all. To cease utterly, to give it all up and not know anything more-this idea was as sweet as the vision of a cool bath in a marble tank, in a darkened chamber, in a hot land.
Science at best is an approximation. Our mathematics invites us to make simplifications and we oblige. Newton works wonderfully as long as you ignore the velocity of light (and who knows what else besides?). Relativity too is simple but allows for c (but who knows what(s) it is ignoring?). [See Asimov on Algebra] [See Korzybski on the unutterable].
McLuhan, “We Need a New Picture of Knowledge.” A structure cannot be contained. Any conceivable container is at once part of the structure, modifying the whole. ibid. … the 20th-century step beyond the method of invention (of the method of invention) which is needed for understanding the origin, the action of such forms as the wheel or the alphabet. And that step is not backtracking from product to starting point, but the following of process in isolation from product. To follow the contours of process, as in psychoanalysis, provides the only means of avoiding the product of process, namely neurosis or psychosis.
Look up for God, not vertical, the third dimension, but vertically to the three dimensions. Vertical in time? Or/and in a dimension beyond time?
Different logical levels in terms of breadth of definition. How much time is involved, e.g.? Religious arguments, marital arguments, career arguments: definitions change with each usage. Intent upon victory, each arguer pretends not to notice. Then we turn to our audience hoping that we’ve slipped the wool over their eyes too.
ACRONYM use by instant groups. Minority jargon imposed on the majority. What is this hubris? TIME or such refer to the FBI, CIA, IRS, etc. There is a forced familiarity there which Americans at least are born into. Until an acronym has dictionary status, it shouldn’t be used in public organs, privately owned or whatever. Manuals should not be written in jargon. The first step (hard): be conscious of your own jargon. Before using it, define it in non-jargon terms. Don’t use jargon synonyms. Computers, bridge, army, gov’t agencies, any specialty. You’d think linguists would know better. Trying to make themselves feel in, they make all other feel out. The result is we’re all left out of most groups and natural language takes another step toward Babel.
Not only, what’s the cost? but what’s the cost of the cost? Economics, for example, without ecology, is shallow and monocular. Or morality without theology; theology without science.
Primo Levi: “… liquids require receptacles. This is the great problem of packaging, which every experienced chemist knows: and it was well know to God Almighty, who solved it brilliantly, as he is wont to, with cellular membranes, eggshells, the multiple peel of oranges, and our own skins, because after all we too are liquids. Now, at that time, there did not exist polyethylene, which would have suited me perfectly since it is flexible, light, and splendidly impermeable: but it is also a bit too incorruptible, and not by chance God Almighty himself, although he is a master of polymerization, abstained from patenting it: He does not like incorruptible things.”
“It is well known to the scholarly that all secretions can be harmful or toxic: now under pathological conditions it is not rare that the paper, a company secretion, is reabsorbed to an excessive degree, and puts to sleep, paralyzes, or actually kills the organism from which it has been exuded.”
“Some are fated to become millionaires, and some are fated to drop dead. He, Lanza, was fated (and he yawned noisily to keep himself company) to make night into day.”
“… often mania prevails over common sense, and alongside five sensible precepts or prohibitions lurk ten senseless, useless ones, which nobody dares rescind only out of mental laziness, superstition, or morbid fear of complications: even when it does not go so far as in military service, in which regulations serve to smuggle in a repressive discipline.”
“I know myself: I do not possess any polemical skill, my opponent distracts me, he interests me more as a man than as an opponent, I take pains to listen and run the risk of believing him, indignation and the correct judgment return later, on the way downstairs, when they are no longer of any use.”
cf axioms and roots of words. i.e. most meanings built up by voluted analogy e.g. from very few elements. cf nature in which everything is based on 100 elements which are based on a few particles which are based on a few quarks which seem to be based on an eightfold pattern which is probably the result of no more than a couple or few of recursions. the metaphorical base of language. difference between math and natural language, unconscious. It makes little difference even to be conscious of the etymological origins, since the ur-origin can never be known, and if it could, antiquity has no authority other than that it existed.
lack of distinction between intelligence and success. Unless intelligence means swallowing the accidental pecking order, automatically adjusting tacit knowledge to the top dog.
DNA: A adenine; G guanine; T thymine; C cytosine.
“genome” total genetic repertoire
QUOTES: “May he have an accident shaped like an umbrella.” Levi’s uncle.
PLATO: it’s not drama, dialogue or no, where everyone agrees, especially when the cases are so egregious. In the Penguin Classics Last Days of Socrates: p. 165. How about this series?:
5 7 9 etc.
odd even odd etc.
p. 170: The important question here is, what harm can neglect do to an immortal thing? Cf Syn notes on immortality and the Big Bang.
Coordinates, set of measurements-p1,p2,p3,p4-to locate an event-particle. three of space, one of time.
“We must not make the mistake of thinking that there is a space in addition to the space-time manifold.” ANW
Dimensions of extension for any aggregate of event-particles: the three “spatial” dimensions give size, something else in needed to give location, and something else to give time, (and something else to say which time?). Or can coordinates be given that have only local significance? SIZE: heighth, width, depth (3) + duration? (1); WHERE: what coordinates wouldn’t be local? It seems to me that a point is minimally four dimensional even if only local coordinates are used.
Draw analogy from astronomer’s “cone of reality” to cones of reality for say different religions. The astronomers deal with a world knowable only through the electro-magnetic spectrum, and there the greatest sensitivity is only to light. Other sources of information (in this case information meaning ideas, complexes of information, irrespective of truth or falsity), what grandfather said, could also be seen as cones of reality.
ANWh Einstein showed how to express the characters of the assemblage of elements of impetus of the field surrounding an event-particle E in terms of ten quantities which I will call [funny] T11, T12 (=T21, T22, T23 (=T32), etc. It will be noted that there are four spatio-temporal measurements relating E to its neighbour P, and that there are ten pairs of such measurements if we are allowed to take any one measurement twice over to make one such pair. The ten T’s depend merely on the position of E in the four-dimensional manifold, and the element of impetus between E and P can be expressed in terms of the ten Ts and the ten pairs of the four spatio-temporal measurements relating E and P. The ten Ts form a “tensor.” The ten Ts at any event-particle E can be expressed in terms of two functions which I call the potential and the ‘associate-potential’ at E. Ts the “coefficients of impetus. … a ray of light always follows a path such that the integral impetus along it is zero.”
QUESTIONS: evidence (examples) of Coriolis forces. arguments against simultaneity
exact design of Foucault
does the cosmos include possibly preceding or succeeding universes, assuming oscillation? could anything escape such as in tau zero?
SOCRATES: evidence that a human being, a moderately conscious organism on average, can face death cheerfully no matter how wrong his metaphysics, his conceptions of life, death, reality, etc.
(1985) 11/9. study oddities of coexisting counting systems. A pair of trousers. Is that two? A pant? Is that one? Systems that start counting with one as the beginning location. Music: if you’re playing C, C is one. The third isn’t three up, but two up. And then major or minor intervals have to be specified. Etc.
Buildings. In US, the first floor is usually the main floor. In France, counting begins with the rédechaussée (sp.?) as zero. The first floor is one up.
Most counting is ten based, but 12 based dominates how we count time and (to some degree) our calendars. There you start with zero or twelve and proceed to one. With computers becoming more generally used, not only binary creeps in again to join the oddities of a brace of birds, but counting starts from zero again. 0,1,2,3 … etc.
Difference between “know” and “believe” not all that great. How about the common occurrence of knowing something emphatically, and yet being wrong.
Yehudi Menuhin. The Music of Man. “That fools should venture where angels fear to tread is perhaps the ultimate justification for the existence of fools.”
“It is only by exploring the extremes that we learn to locate the center.”
esp. good on Bach. e.g. p. 132 ff.: “Rules are the composer’s servants, not his masters.”
1 Jan 1986: Wait a minute. You can’t stand inside a school and blame students, all of whose time you and the school have preempted, for not doing or knowing something that you’ve
• a) failed to teach them,
• b) prevented them for having the time, energy, opportunity, etc. to invent.
The government discovered that it had to back up on personal freedom. It had always assumed that invention was limitless the way we used to take air and water for granted.
How can we ‘program’ our progeny with a few basic advances in epistemology? I believe we’d be much better off if more people knew how to think, to weigh evidence, etc. There is no question how helpful our abilities to act on partial assimilation of partial information have been to bring us to where we are, but the troubles it leads us to are becoming more and more pathological.
Sturgeon: “She may be wrong, but she’s certain.”
p. 321 “[Widget]” in Boucher.
“at right angles to time”
“But if he saw civilization as an intricate, moving entity, the function of law changed. I was governor, stabilizer, inhibitor, control of something dynamic and progressive, subject to the punishments and privileges of evolution like a living thing.” p 357
(I hope Bateson saw that line)
“A human being is an element in a whole culture, and the culture itself is alive.” p. 367.
Only beggars can be choosers. The first stroke on paper limits as well as establishes the composition.
(2016 04 27 as I insert linebreaks without being sure, I also “correct” seeming misspellings, impossible to be sure: can backfire but what the hell.)
Competition to young/ competition to be immature/ competition to prolong the opportunity to have some objectivity. Objectivity? or callowness, inexperience, and irrelevance to the issues?
(date clues. April, 1986)
4/30: remembering Jamie’s experience with Sunday school, remembering Dave Metz and Cheltenham, etc. When one enters a new group it seems to be universal that something is done to send you to the bottom of the pecking order. Exceptions are made only through imperially founded rigamarole: we’d tend not to do it so much to an emperor, a president, a visiting dignitary, the new chairman of the board. Most people put up with it and get even not against those who put them down but against the next newcomer, or latter in some reversed advantage as they climb the pecking order. One can just say bull shit, but then one is not welcome as a member of the group. Cheating me at Cheltenham seemed to be ok because I was new. It made no difference how they respected me or what they thought of my prospects with them. It didn’t even matter that I was older and more experienced than any of them.
(1986) 5/10/: tv show in which the daughter of the family is shown to be not doing well in school. ‘If you don’t get at least a B in history, you won’t graduate.’ Biggest pressure shown to be that she doesn’t want to disappoint them in their plans to attend the graduation. Not she doesn’t want to be ignorant or stupid, not that they don’t want her to be ignorant, etc. Teacher says she doesn’t apply herself. Family says she spends her time shopping. Example of her poor understanding and work habits: when the Indians bought Manhattan for $24 they established New York as a great place for bargains. The writer’s one good line in the show is taken as evidence of poor performance!
My understanding is that is was a quantity of beads, trinkets, etc. that the “Indians” (Algonquins? an assembly of tribes? no one from India was there that I’ve ever heard of.) accepted in exchange for letting the newcomers do what they were doing anyway: developing the island. The newcomers valued the items at $24 (or rather some historian put a value of $24 on it. his value? his contemporaries’ value? The value of the Dutch? They didn’t have or use dollars at the time.), the Indians valued it as the island, or as the best they could get under the circumstances, or something for nothing, since they didn’t have the same concept of property. If they thought it was what the island was “worth,” then those were valuable beads indeed. The world no longer contains beads of that value. All the beads, all the diamonds and rubies, all the great paintings of the world, the Mona Lisa and all Rembrants, the entire Vatican today doesn’t have that value. But then circumstances are different. Any buyer today would start on “equal” footing. If Martians were about to take over the world, had already made important local transformations, if we were helpless to do much about it, maybe kill a few Martians, maybe grouse a little but with no hope of winning the war or of shoring up our culture, maybe we’d “sell” the Grand Canyon for a consignment of uranium or a pretty piece of paper or a couple of ion drives. Maybe some Martian historian would someday joke that the ion drives were worth twelve herns.
Anyway, it seems to be assumed that the audience will agree with the teacher that her answer isn’t what’s required. Maybe it isn’t a “good” answer because we don’t recognize it as one likely ever to have been uttered by a high school teacher. The girl agrees to “study.” She actually does so for a few weeks. The teacher continues to be aggrieved and jars the girl into a stream of text bookish gibberish, but recognizable bull shit gibberish about Adams and political strife of two hundred years ago. Now the teacher is pleased. And, it seems, so is the audience supposed to be.
1986 Sept 02
1986 12 Oct large outdoor public FOUCAULT pendulum. would need to inscribe its path to show time to passers-by
beyond a certain threshold, Bateson says, all things become toxic. He further says that an addiction is a habit that doesn’t serve survival, doesn’t further evolution. Stored labor, made semi-permanent and easily portable in the form of money, has served our cultural evolution and greatly (grossly?) contributed to our survival. Unfortunately, we have devoted ourselves to this sometimes good thing to an extent which has become toxic and are, as a society, hopelessly (?) addicted to it. We have moved from an economy in which money facilitated certain kinds of transactions and widened the possibilities of their occurrence in time-the labor of the farmer as well as the sun’s radiant energy and chemical energies from the immediate environment are stored in the crop. The larger the farming enterprise, the more capital as well as labor is stored in the crop, say the capital of earlier conquest on the part of the farmer or his ancestors. But even a loser or a non-participant or past conquest or non-participant in the clearing and holding of the land can store his labor as part of the crop and be recompensed in money as well as shelter, protection, food, etc.
The setting aside of land for farming reduces the flexibility of the local biomass. The number of species served by it is reduced and certainly the number of individuals. But the couple of preferred species flourish (temporarily at least)-the grass grows-corn, wheat, whatever-the people who want that grass, the farmer and his dependents, and whatever other members of the biomass go unnoticed-soil bacteria may like the wheat as well as the weeds, worms, some species of birds and assorted animals, mice, moles, etc. Farming, by definition, specializes the land. Fine, as long as its the exception, not the rule.
So, even the non-“owner” of the land can participate in the crop at both ends. Paying wages increases flexibility within the favored species-the laborer can leave and buy food from a farmer he didn’t work for, and buy clothes and other things he was too busy to make for himself or can’t make for himself. If, in the meantime he forgets how to make the things for himself that he once knew how to make for himself, he may still be gaining a (temporary?) advantage.
Something like this process has been exponentiating for ten thousand years. Still, within recent cultural memory, the economy of even this capital intensive and money addicted society was mixed. We did damage to ourselves and to the land and to others, other species, other people, but we flourished. We also maintained some economic flexibility. During the past couple of generations, the growth of money has been engendered by and itself engendered an exponentiation of a total dependence among humans on money. Do we know what the toxicity threshold of money is? Are we approaching it? Have we passed already?
There are still individuals who are not addicted to money, who can shelter, feed, cloth, entertain, and reproduce themselves with varying amounts of it; but the society in general seems to be addicted to it. Can that addicted society reproduce itself in a viable form? Will its descendants be able to weather change? Junkies can create other junkies. Under favorable circumstances, that’s what they’re good at. But is any generation of junky viable? That is can it survive change?
That should be an important question for a money society since it changes everything it touches.
people and their opinions as floating, oscillating switches in the circuits of the species in history. Brought on by reading Henry James Portrait of a lady. Our culture, dominated by Christian and logical epistemologies, idly assumes the idea of one God, one truth, one eternity, one time, one consistency. Science too seeks invariance. Contrast the floating cybernetic truth of drama, of dialogue, of mixing different perspectives in one conversation. e.g. the conversation, the airing of opinions, between Miss Stackpole and Mrs. Touchett.
Dr Pickering describes the brain functioning like a termite colony. Hoffsteter likewise. Similarly society. Each individual (of our culture) imagines himself as holding a view which he thinks is true and/or intelligent. A moment later he’s holding some other view, inconsistent if compared to the former in isolation, but not at all inconsistent with the set of assumptions, observations, data, new input, etc. which have combined to make him conduct a different current.
Our theology posits one God, one truth. So do the Chinese who immediately have that unity propagate a host of progeny. Unity and multiplicity are not incompatible if one considers the circuitry; they are if one considers one gate which is either on or off and linking or not A and B or A and C or B and X.
Of course we occasionally kill each other or deprive or attempt to deprive each other of prestige, income, or liberty in our effort to shore up our current position. We like to think that a victory proves something: that the victor is right. No doubt he is. The next question is how viable and how enduring is his rightness?
The contradiction or variable purpose James is so good at is the biological imperative mixed in with social, cultural, historical, and pathological purpose. Isabel Archer wants to have a destiny. (In Shaw’s Misalliance remember, the father is in the garden “contemplating his destiny”-the poor post-Napoleonic 19th-Century.) All these servile lords and captains of industry want to marry her. She doesn’t deny her biological purpose: she wants to live first, though she doesn’t have any precise idea of what that means. And neither do many others in a time of change.
“Guilty,” pronounced the judge. In chambers, the defendant, obviously of the same ethnic group as the judge, sighs with relief. “Whew. I thought the prosecution made some threatening points.” “They had truth on their side; you had justice on yours.”
One can be a connoisseur of belief systems. We never “know” anything in so far as “know” would mean perfect correspondence in all details between a perception or definition and the unutterable, objective “thing” or “reality” itself. That’s between the perceptive world inside the head of an individual or heads of a culture. Neither can the individual or group “know” perfectly its own perceptions. The objective existence of eidetic phenomena must forever cast a degree of doubt even on the accuracy of consciousness’s perception of its own neural activity. Yes, you “saw” something, but would all others necessarily see the same thing from the same perspective? The question is not testable as a perspective cannot be duplicated. Even if the positions can be located and duplicated, time will have changed. One can’t even be completely sure of one’s own thoughts a moment later: memory may have altered them.
Industrial missionary on planet swinging between cottage mode and corp. mode is approached by the “corrupt” mayor and chairman of sixteen local and galactic corporations. “Cut the horse shit; I’m a professional myself.” etc.
Value Engineering: Frame-consider dimensions including time. Consider context. (reminds me of how justice is different depending on whether you’re looking down on it (incarcerating n-words (Bowdlerizing K. 2016 07 31)), up at it (appealing to God e.g. where you’re not sure of the rules, or level (judging or being judged by your peers).
X to priest: “They’ll look up to you as long as they can look down on you.”
Godel’s theorem/paradox/double binds: Nexus of zipper or interlocking/woven reality strand. Certainly cultural, perhaps physical as well. Unifications vs. unzipping. Picture pointed Upsilon.
novel about a drunk who sues the liquor company for their corrupting ads.
(1986) 8/11 Two antagonists lie exhausted unto death at the end of a war of many battles. Their armies are dead, the records of their proud battles, their clever skirmishes, are lost. Every weapon has been used up or broken. If one more stroke could win the war for either they could not deliver the blow. Perhaps if they breath another minute they will be able to accomplish it. Maybe they’ll die. Maybe the other will be victor, maybe neither. They can focus on only one thing-not focus-their awareness embraces only one thing. The war has been over a religious, a metaphysical difference, an incompatibility. The difference remains. Neither can understand how the other can have fought so valiantly for a wrong. If anything besides the difference exists in their awareness, it is the valiancy of the other. They lie ready to suffocate in the deep mud. One recovers the power of speech. He sees the returned scrutiny of one filth encrusted eye. Another gap in the mud shows an exposed throat. If he could crawl closer, he might be able to give one last chop with his hand. It no longer interests him. He works his mouth. His words are strange to him.
people standing before a classic painting or in a room of classic artifacts, the Mona Lisa or a room in the Ufizzi, e.g. vs. a modern painting, a Francis Bacon e.g. or the Guggenheim or a room in the Whitney. Even a cultural illiterate who may dismiss the importance or value of anything not in his class, will not feel uncomfortable in the presence of the classic. The structure of his perceptions will not be challenged however much their quality may be. The same viewer will not be comfortable in the modern situation. He would be unable to present a stimulating critique of the Mona Lisa, but the painting doesn’t make him feel that he doesn’t understand it, that he’s left out of the conversation or that the joke is on him. “Good” 20th-century art challenges outmoded forms of perception. The person who still experiences life through stone-age epistemologies or whose math is still Euclidean and only Euclidean, whose physics is still Newtonian or pre-Newton (however ignorant of formal math or physics he may be), is not only challenged but unbalanced. It should surprise no one that he resents it or that he should try to fight back with some comment about what his kindergartner could do.
(1986) 8/19: re: Plato upgraded by Russell’s logical levels via Bateson & Korzybski: spectrum from extensional to intensional: individual organism exists toward the extensional, concrete, unutterable end of the spectrum, the level of “fact.” Species, group characteristics, continuities, etc. exist further along the spectrum toward the intensional, a different plane of reality, a “higher,” i.e.. more abstract, logical level. A level where immortality is not a total absurdity, a level of “truth.” But these abstractions are never true, never exist, in the way that the extensional examples exist. The examples are individually always temporary. The abstractions may be temporary too, though on a different time scale. Ripples in the continuum that last, last longer than those that last not so long.
Compare Plato’s imperfectly presented, imperfectly understood, misleading doctrine of the ideal vs. the real or the Real vs. the nominal.
Arguments e.g. on what’s “economically” good or good for “mankind” usually depend on vague and inconsistent concepts of all of the relevant basics. As though mankind neither includes nor is included in the biosphere, e.g. Whether total wealth is measured in dollars or dollars plus the quality of existing assets plus or minus deterioration of prior assets. We have no tested method of evaluating prior assets. We have no tested way of measuring alternate organizations. We can never know what we’ve missed.
A couple of faggots like Donaghue and Boscaglia get together and coach women in their imagined superiorities and resentments. Switch the conventional absurdity around about men but leave your own untouched, unrotated.
Importance of determining whether learning of individuals’ life times can be genetically transmitted. When we imagine a superior life form, that’s often the difference we imagine. 2001, Starman, what other smart baby did I see recently?
Woman fleeing with her almost adolescent son. Atmosphere of threat, of dread. Strange Planet. Her enemies are near. “There’s one” “There are two of them.” “Get them.” “Wait, this one’s a boy, almost grown.” “Don’t hurt my son.” “Woman, what’s the matter with you? He must be almost twelve. It’s already years since he should have come over to us.” Etc.: battle between the sexes, allowing for reproduction to continue.
Movie opening: Dim light. Sophisticated, even intellectual, conversation. Some elementalism. Hyper-awareness of male-female. Elegant forms, elegant movements in half shadow. Phone rings. Female unhurriedly rises and strolls to phone table. Languidly reaches and raises to ear. Timely pause. Relaxed throated “Hello?” “Is Jack in?” Polite enough male voice. “Who should I say is calling?” “Put him on the phone.” Civilized peremptory: not brutal. “Jack, it’s your father.” Takes a more angularly hipped step toward couch. Light is flicked on. Young male disentangles self from companions. Light shows flickering of routed adultness on every now clearly adolescent face and figure.
Idea of tribe straining toward escape velocity of universe, then looking back for 20 billion years or so as new cosmic egg is formed and new habitable universe forms, already taken. See Poul Anderson Tau Zero.
they say that the speed of light is constant and the universe is expanding. What if the size of the universe is constant and the speed of light diminishing?
story about an unprecedentedly powerful particle accelerator bringing the experiments to the lip of understanding that the whole incredibly complex chain of relationships is zipped together by the improbability of the collisions they are inducing. Gee, maybe we shouldn’t … whoops!
reading the structural differential makes me think: story in which an alien condescends to try to explain in English why he can’t explain in English.
Alien tries to explain why no retribution is required for the murder of one of theirs.
tv piece, journalism, on prejudice: history of the movements of peoples, the nature of species, of races, etc.
explorer hanging around market place with side-kick, disciple. Sees beggar apprehended for stealing, harshly judged, ear cut off. explorer wants to teach side-kick about supply and demand in relation to value. Watch closely he says. it’s a desert country. there’s a fountain. the earless beggar then watches vast quantities of the food he has stolen wasted at the evening orgy. what is valuable here? what decline is what commodities would bring the society to ruin? water, of course, but it’s a scarcity they still have a great deal of, etc. No, don’t you see?: beggars, unorganized masses to push around. but they are probably unaware of their true economy. here, watch this, and he offers to rid the country of wastrels.
science as a conscious pursuit with consciously reviewable rules and guidelines, etc. is relatively new; but science, meaning simply looking around, forming hypothesis of how things work, and adjusting them as discrepancies become apparent, is not. In that sense, a cultures myths are always scientific. We are in an odd time in that our science is somewhat conscious, while are myths are less so. Our science has percolated down generally enough for there to be a sense that the myths aren’t right. New myths are needed, and as always, they should come from science. I don’t mean that scientists should write (i.e.. compose) them, though there is no reason why they should be ineligible either. Some of the most promising myths are being generated by scientists. But none yet that I am aware of that should endure the way Adam and Eve, original sin, the flood, heaven and hell, etc. have endured for a fair couple of millennia.
We are in a time when old religions have seen revival and new religions have formed. I don’t think we’ve more than begun.
Of course there’s Myth and myth: one is a digested (experienced) overview, the other is something which simply fails to agree with the evidence. “It is a myth that …” etc. Discrepancies must always be corrected. It always takes time and it is often painful. Often requires the deaths of generations.
there are certain learnings that can only take place with security, tenure, free use of resources. There are others, also valuable, that can only occur in deprivation, desperation, want. Nature, evolution, … know this. It’s built in. Wise societies would see the need to lose a war occasionally. Oh, maybe best if the victor is wise and benevolent; sometimes inferior culture will do. Wipe the slate clean.
Where is a switch when it’s off?
In the same place. There, on the wall. Ok, the lever is flicked in the other direction. Down, if they’ve installed it the way I like.
No. That’s the mechanism which activated the switch. Where is the switch itself.
What are you talking about? What’s the difference?
Difference! That’s just it. A switch, when it’s off, is nowhere. It exists, but only as a Not. The line which carries the current no longer exists.
Don’t be silly. The line is there in the wall. No one comes and takes the wiring out just because you turn the lights off.
Ah. But there is no line when the switch is off, it is a Not. There’s just wire. Like the difference between them, between them being on and off, between being a line and being wire, there is no location. A switch exists, but has no location in space. In space/time, yes. But not in space. Like God, it exists, but has no extensional existence.
They didn’t understand that light has a finite velocity.
Well, all right. They were stupid. How fast did they think it went?
That’s just it. They didn’t think about speed. Their default assumption was infinite.
No human being was ever that dumb. Nothing has an infinite velocity. It’s obvious. Etc.
Near impossibility of understanding the mind based on a different set of assumptions and therefore observations, without understanding that your own are likewise. Nevertheless, some observations are better than others and “prove” their inadequacy, the wrongness. Things can only be proved wrong, never right in the sense of being complete.
(Amusing to see this as I Mac it (merely scanning for carriage returns, but still, I catch a little sense here and there): this was ’85ish, before I’d read Doug Adams or LW On Certainty.)
Hello. Hello. What do you do? I’m a salesman. What do you sell? Certainty. What? Certainty. I’m a certainty salesman. Oh, wow. I’ll be your customer. I’d love to be certain of something. Terrific. What would you like to be certain about? I have a special on everything. My prices are always good on metaphysics. I’d like to be certain … uh, that … that things are getting better. That’s easy. It’ll probably be cheap too. I can work up a price for you as soon as you answer a few questions. Wait, I need a clean page to start a chart. Name, etc. (guy cooperates for a few questions) Tell me three things you’re already certain of? What does that have to do with anything? Oh, I assure you, it’s very important. How about one? Well, ok. Uhm, … What does this have to do with anything? I need at least one thing before I can even explain. How about that you exist? Most of my customers are sure of at least that. Well, sure. How could anyone be not certain of that? Oh, not typically, but very easily, I assure you. Radical surgery is needed for such a person. The price can climb. Ok, I’m sure I exist. And I’m sure you exist. Why, thank you. How about God? etc. leads to lobotomy. All a question of wiring. Has nothing to do with truth. The salesman has no more idea what that is than most.
child who wants to be able to fly, to be free, gets his wish. Finds self a parrot. Flies first thing above the jungle canopy. Immediately taken by an eagle.
ss: story of people in downtown galaxy who develop fine theory of probability noticing novas and speculating on dangers to own race. They wonder if life could develop elsewhere and decide not: too dangerous, it must be the most fantastic accident that they were able to develop intelligence as their astronomy reminds them of their own doom. They head for safety. The question rekindles as they head for a calm outskirt. Could life develop there? Not likely, too few stars, probabilities overwhelming. Then they find us (or others).
story of semantic dream regulator: guy dreams of busting out into reality. First dialogue with cell mate. Why don’t you configure a stylite’s dream or something if you’re tired of winning Nobel prizes?
story of electronic brain pattern displayer which is making speech obsolete. Attempts on the part of the establishment, parents, schools, etc. to “teach” speech to those who they don’t notice are expressing themselves and communicating (among themselves) better without it.
Guy, the defendant, sitting in a court room, getting fed up as his testimony is interrupted, misunderstood, misrepeated, etc. Judge is letting everyone get away with it and doesn’t even seem to be aware that rules of evidence, etc. are being violated. The guy’s lawyer has promised to stick up for him and get him a fair hearing. Of course he isn’t. The guy tries to signal to the lawyer to object. The judge reprimands HIM. The lawyer tries to signal him, it’s all all right, all according to plan, or close. He’ll get a reduced sentence, no need for a mistrial. Just hang on. Be humble. Show your respect for the court.
Sorry, this court has failed my trial for it. The guy stands up and tells the judge that he’s finished and going home. Judge warns him that he’ll be detained in irons if he doesn’t behave. No, he says, he’s finished: his verdict is in: the judge, the court, the audience, all, all guilty. He can’t stop them from cuffing and hand-cuffing him, but he’s through. The judge gets purple and talks extra load till he’s hoarse as well as shrill. The guy looks at the clock. One twenty-eight. The guy says, look at the clock. Remember. I warned you.
The judge clears the court till the guy can be bound and caged while the trial proceeds. etc. Queens has disappeared. He had already make Venus disappear, but no one had noticed. That is, no one had connected it with him. He had thought the warning sufficient. Then the demonstration sufficient. It’s not his fault that they don’t listen, don’t believe, don’t think as well as lie and delude themselves.
People continued to drive onto the Queensboro bridge as it enveloped in fog. They continued to drive onto it for hours. It was an unusually clear day in New York. Suddenly it had only been the section of the East River that passes Queens that had become extraordinarily foggy. Traffic had snarled as usual at 2nd and 59th to get onto the bridge. Hours passed before it became generally apparent that no traffic was coming off the bridge.
Day before, fog descends over the Chrysler building. People, including officials investigating, pass easily into it but never emerge again. Just one square block of vertical fog.
Problem is to figure a salable reason he’s victimized. Scene came into my head upon reading Einstein’s “The most beautiful and deepest experience a man can have is the sense of the mysterious…” and hearing, oh, yeah, and women too.
followed by that’s a stupid and sexist thing to say
followed by an aggressive failure to follow the argument that man isn’t gender specific. Of course, the language is sexist right down to its most basic grammar, not to mention its vocabulary, but misunderstanding good use of it for political reasons is more so.
Maybe the guy is in jail for killing another judge. Some outrage, followed by his decision to execute the guy while sitting in his chair and in public and take the consequences, not sneak around after him at his home and do him there. So the guy invents a weapon that the metal detector won’t stop him for: maybe a plastic telesyringe with gene-randomizing viruses inside. Too old for it to do any good, the judge just got sick and almost died.
guy tries to explain that he is of a different species, yes he’s human, but he bears other potentials: species contain many species: gene binding and time binding: evolution of ideas. etc.
frustration of cheap Christian: gee, it worked when Roy pulled it on me; how come when I try what seems to be the same crap on Paul it doesn’t work and I come out at the bottom again?
story: LF entropy accounting system: uh oh, too great an imbalance. and he’s been careful. What could it be? A new order?
title for a collection of short stories: ASTEROIDS
title: Why I am not (and have never been) a communist.
story in which people can elect to be placed in the universe in an environment in which, before going (age 16), they choose the ratio of population to wealth. Transport is the ante and you’ve got to pay it back. Relocation is expensive, so choose carefully. Few change. So some argue that the ratio is miscalculated. Oh yeah? Become a mathematician and recalculate it. They’re all on Earth. It’s political, etc.
cf false advertising and evolution, flowers to attract insects by fooling them, e.g.
guy on a street-corner is offering to bet on the total population for x/x/1999. How about population of whales then? How about mosquitoes. Oh, accuracy within 10 percent would be fine. Good, what do you want to bet? Oh, no. Money’s no good. Land? Maybe. Cars? Machines? Absolutely not. I want something guaranteed valuable whatever the answer is.
like, Synthesis, try fiction and reality. abstract levels. higher more general. truer, though not factual.
Socrates and the history of legalisms and false distinctions. Physicists’ work, e.g. and then the subtler realization that the law has been doing the same thing for centuries. How can I steal your cow and also come out looking like the injured party?
Ok, make sure you understand this by Monday, says the orientation guy handing out books and booklets. New employee doesn’t come in Monday. or Tues. etc. 30 years later, he’s staying alive as a janitor. Comes back to the company tries to remind them who he is. He had a problem understanding statement x p. y. Eventually decided that the writer wasn’t clear. Finally decided he was wrong, but couldn’t think of how to demonstrate it. Think the device he’s brought in, proves his point and he holds out a X (transistor, triode, ?) which he has invented and constructed to the point.
story of star composer: space ship which uses the belches and burbles of a star for avant garde music. not funded. expensive, but on his own. no audience for star sounds. True space/time music since he edits great measures of both to juxtapose the music of more than one star to make it hearable to one listener.
situation: woman tries hard to attract a guy. He seems interested and interesting but doesn’t seem to her to be really responding. etc. Offers very formally to escort her home. she fudges: it’s what she had wanted he
he says it like he’s not on the same wave length. yes anyway, but she acts remote, protecting her disappointment. He pays her some impersonal compliment, says it was nice to meet you etc. and leaves. Back in his trailer the guy who conceals his poverty with some skill is uncomfortable at having been aroused since he can’t even buy her a cup of coffee without deprivation more serious than he’s already undergoing. (voluntarily while working on his invention to save the world.
guy invents a fabulous method of control. Not a weapon. it influences, not destroys. They guy is a ne’er do well but has some contact with some movers. They advise him that it would take bread to do it right, really develop it. Needs big capital, big organization. Sell it to the government and make a million by tonight. I don’t think so. Oh. Maybe smart. Sell it to Dupont: let them develop it and sell it piece by piece to the government, make multimillions by five years. I don’t think so. But you’re got to. It’ll take you forever as a individual. No, you’re right, I’ll sell it. Oh, GM? No, a country. Don’t be a sap. the Russians couldn’t afford what you could get here. It’s Uncle Sam’s game. No I think I’ll sell it to India. Then Bucky Fuller’s reasons. Repudiation of private property means for exclusive advantages. Repudiation of civilization, or profit not generalized. It’s not of course that everyone is or should be or could be equal. Neither than everyone resource should or could be equally shared. If there’s only food enough to one family, one group, one couple, or one individual, then I’m going to compete, to struggle to get all of it. But it doesn’t follow that one must withhold on principle. Repudiation of paranoid defense, preventative offense, etc.
The system will seem efficient to the inattentive because it’s still there, they see no other, so “it works.” And indeed it does provided that its inefficiencies are subsidized by the pawns, the exPFC Wintergreens being the minority; the dobbins greater in number.
The last few centuries have been a golden age for science, none more so than the present one? Can it last? Have we overextended the patience of the many for the uncomfortable objectivity of the few? Shock waves of truth reach larger and larger sections of the human population. They know neither details nor patterns of what’s involved but sense disruption and discomfort. There is a momentary and false pride in the accomplishments of the species.
Instinct-preprogrammed (i.e. narrow) behavior in regard to higher levels of abstraction. Full freedom is retained on some levels of choice. Do I (a squirrel) cache this acorn next, or that one?
Study of literature according to types of figures!!!
Judge quotes “the people.” Politician quotes likewise. Other ages. Then future time when it is attempted even by those in positions of responsibility to try accountability. FACT-THEORY. You should be able to tell from moment to moment whether a person is giving fact or theory and also true fact/false fact-preferred theory/alternate theory/discredited theory/demolished theory and/or what mixture of both. “Oh, not bad: a 4.5 …” “What’s that?” Guy’s got a formula for rating the mixture. An index.
entropy vs. negentropy: evolution as a weapon, genes as weapons, memes as weapons, but using reorganization rather than dissolution and randomization. Picasso’s “art is a series of destructions.”
mccluhanism in narrative of private space ships looking like AIRplanes, like buggy whips on early cars.
love is a bad business deal yet maintains the elastic zone necessary for evolution to operate in. I give all regardless of what’s coming back to me? Hmm. Anyway, that’s only if one takes a profession of love “literally.” What else might be there? I love you: therefore, you owe me fealty regardless of how I treat you. (God to Jews, parent to child, mother to schizophrenic …)
story in which Victorianism is reversed. Individualism, self-service, the sex drive, non-cooperation is the default assumption of the society. Other theories taboo. One individual feels contradiction. If that’s so, why do I feel this need to cooperate? What’s in it for me? I don’t know, but I feel the need anyway. Blanco Posnet.
Bateson: “Relationship is always a product of double description.”
Chances are what are taken for us whether we know it or not.
Honesty is remembering which lies we’ve tacitly agreed to pretend to believe.
If you got it, you use it. The curse of technology. And of biology.
Korzybski: “We can through extensional and four dimensional methods translate the dynamic into the static and the static into the dynamic, and so establish a similarity of structure between language and facts.”
Life is mostly missed chances.
Looking at history with resentment because it didn’t always obey your own this-week’s morality.
McLuhan. A structure cannot be contained.
No absolutes, but there are standards.
Our ancestors took from the birth of the species till barely a hundred years ago to ask that question profitably. I’m asking it of you out of left field and in mere seconds. Take all day, take your life time. If you can answer it well in less than 60,000 years, you’re ahead of the game.
priest: someone whose profession it is to show how willingly he has let the wool be pulled over his eyes.
sincerity: not being aware of the next higher level of abstraction which governs the subject. cf patriot and minister of propaganda. Salesman: I love to offer cashmere to customers. Other salesman: I’m good at helping people to want indulgences they don’t really need.
Sometimes the worst harm you can do your enemy is to leave him alone. (from somewhere? never interrupt your enemy when he is in the process of destroying himself. Nietzsche)
Study society as a cybernetic model and then try to understand law, mores, rights, history, etc. Laws are not better than the men observing or controlling them. Their only effective meaning is what’s practiced.
Sturgeon’s She may be wrong, but she’s certain; and at right angles to time.
the discovery that all things are intrinsically interesting provided you know enough about them to begin to see the wonders, the mysteries.
some line breaks added, some date clues noted, retained