Long History of Evil

Better this morning. More heat in the air and also motion. Almost pleasant. And the podcast was acceptable if a bit dull. But then podcasts – all media programs – are. This gave me opportunity to consider human behavior again.

I was talking to a politicizer yesterday. That’s a person who is politicking but not running for office themselves. They tend to be more engaging and more knowledgeable than the candidates who have rather a talking head existence. Especially that ferd Ain’tWorthless who can’t pitch a tent. If there was ever a front for organizational masters it is he. At least in my opinion.  

But the politicizer was heavy into being ‘pro-choice’. Kept pushing the self-determination aspect. Not bad – for the first fifty picoseconds or so and then got stale. That’s a factor in my support but I am also moved by what I perceive as a fundamental evil in the ‘pro-life’ advocates. What they are advocating is a form of chattel slavery. And I don’t like slavery. Anyone who practices it should be sen for organ harvesting. And it’s a prevarication. I haven’t met a single ‘pro-life’ advocate who doesn’t kill living things. They eat meat and plants; they use soap and medicines, including antibiotics; they use Lysol. The hire exterminators. Hypocrites, one and all sampled. And hypocrisy is almost as bad as slave holding.

But on the positive side I ran across a couple of very nice bits of news about humans. First, I found out that boffins at the Max Planck Institut have determined that homo sapiens and homo neandertalensis have been interbreeding for 50 KY. [Link] Of course since neandertals went away about 30 KYA, I should say they first miscegenated 50 KYA. Approximately.

This is a roaring laugh maker. First, I laugh every time I see Max Planck associated with not-physics. Hubris, you know. And maybe a bit of idolatry? And then there is the joy that all us Euro-Americans are crossbreeds. And the African-Americans that Anglo-Saxons used to lynch as inferiors are less so. Rather improves the foul taste in my mouth thinking about this when some sanctimonious self-righteous, religionist fanatic ‘pro-life’r is promoting slavery. Do we need to add christianism to the list of things whose name is the opposite, like political science which isn’t science?

The second is that humans adopted milk consumption 4 KY before they developed mutations for adults to secrete lactase. So early cow raisers were a digestively unhappy bunch. I have to admit to disliking the use of the term lactose intolerant . That’s a condition for children who have always – until someone shows data otherwise – secreted lactase. Otherwise they couldn’t suckle. Or they could but they’d be digestively unhappy. But adults who can’t secrete lactase are the majority, about 3/4 species-wide. But in Amerika they are discriminated against and persecuted. Not as bad as pregnant women, but still harassed and bullied. 

So it seems that eating is a bigger deal than living. Someone tell the founding grandfather. 

And the next time I see those slavers calling themselves ‘pro-life’ I can think about what mongrelized illegitimate offspring they are. 

Identical but for Lies

Once more into the boundary between out and in, and once more adult supervision. FD SCP has ended her work week and I am already smarting under the onus of her projects. The park was a bit low in warmth this morning but not from a wind. Not quite comfortable and the necessary bundling seemed excessive for what the thermometer proclaimed. I tried out a new Linux podcast and was disappointed, which probably contributed to the ill ease. Not that it is a bad ‘cast, just that it is a style not amenable fully to me. 

On those azimuths, several thoughts. I have been watching the political races in Alibam increasing in heat. I have a great interest in the guvnuh race since it is really a good versus good failing and being evil race. The latter is the incumbent who found ways to grease the pockets of cronies but not provide medical care. That latter is still a repudenialist tactic, of taking an opponent’s good and making it seem bad. This is particularly the case with the attorney general race. If we go on positive aspects – what the candidates are for – then the two are indistinguishable to a confidence level of 0.95 which is the standard statistical goodness for bogs. 

I should comment that the bogs don’t understand that – heck!, I don’t understand it fully but that’s because statisticians are a special subspecies of nerd – but the parrotage they are taught in college stats classes – and then promptly repress – is o.95 (or 0.05 which is the same) confidence level. And I will insert the snideism that that confidence level is on the posing of the situation, not its actuality. At least, not always.

But getting back to the attorney general candidates, the two are essentially the same on what they are; the difference is in what they say the other is. The incumbent is claimed to be incompetent and the toady of monied interests – what politician isn’t? – while the challenger is claimed to be incompetent if elected because of – good political logic here – twisting good things done into evil and bad. We can only worry if the same goes of the incumbent. 

I don’t expect my concerns to be resolved. An article [Link] in IO9 shows the restrictiveness of state voting laws:

Alibam is notably one of the most restrictive states. In fact, voting in many ways is more restrictive than in the days of poll taxes when money was openly paid to purchase votes. 

The real lesson is about society. Individual voters are well aware that they are being deceived and prevaricated. But they vote for the evil anyway because with the partisan system there are no alternatives. And in Alibam, there is really no difference between the parties. Except which lies they throw about each other.

Hurts Talk

I had occasion yesterday to come to consider the nature of human communication. And yes, this was a result of my weekly pilgrimage to Nawth Alibam’s Shining City on the Hill. Which was abbreviated and amodal because of seasonal sinus drainage. Headaches and nausea. Neither of which inspire communication effort.

Anyway, I came to reflect on conversations between an adult and a child. Leave aside for now the ones where the adult tries to ‘reduce’ to the child’s assumed level and the conversation is an abysmal failure because of the artificiality and deception. No, consider only honest conversations.

These conversations are generally failures because of differing world view and a mutual absence of interest. Such conversations fail quickly and are difficult with increasing magnitude over time. And this is for modal children (adults) who don’t suffer any communication disability such as Autism spectrum. For them communication is much more difficult.

It struck me, mostly because all of my communications (verbal, at least) yesterday were with bogs. Nice people all, insofar as I could tell with brief conversation, but bogs nonetheless. And then it struck me how like adult-child conversations these were. And no, I am not going to say which side was adult or child. Not relevant and highly distracting.

But what it reminded me is the enormous world view differences between bogs and geeks and nerds. Talking with a bog is much like talking with a slightly mentally disabled child. One can’t talk maths because they deliberately forgot what little they learned immediately after high schule. Nor can one talk about reality because bog reality is social while nerd reality is rational. At least in the main. There is some overlap but usually not much. And the density of interest is almost always different. What bothers bogs is almost always nuisance parameters for nerds (see! math speak,) and what bother nerds is irrelevant to bogs until it kills them. 

Further, what interests bogs is highly voyeuristic while what interests nerds is participatory. Again, that maths handicap, at least in part. So there is this fundamental impedance mismatch. Which brings us back to the model of adult-child conversation. 

And perhaps some insight into why nerds have so much problem with society. 

In Praise of Stupid?

What do you call an organization that shoots itself in the foot with a thermonuclear device?

Adobe.

How did they do this?

By discontinuing the Abode Acrobat Reader for Linux.

Yes, Linux is a small part of the total market. Maybe only as much as 0.5. But it is the growing part. Apple is essentially static; MegaHard is shrinking. 

No one debates the value of the PDF. But Adobe has now surrendered control of the PDF to the FOSS community, specifically the folks who write the Linux clients that read and write PDF. By removing their support to Linux of their vision of the file format they force Linux users to use other clients that create and read and manipulate the files. 

And if the few, the increasingly few, who use other OS don’t comply with what the FOSS community does, the universality of the PDF is gone. And the people who use PDF can’t afford that. 

Sic Transit Gloria Mundi. 

Order beyond Comprehension

Nothing is more alien to the mind of the military monk than change.

The quote is from J. F. C. Fuller who has the distinction of having more periods in his name than I. Among other things. But a companion to this is: nothing is more irritating to the military mind than a form of order they can neither understand nor control.

This weekend I came across this cartoon: [Link]

 

and I was immediately precipitated into consideration of my years of dealing with the Yankee army’s policy of “clean desk”. First of all, the name is completely inaccurate. No, not the desk part. We had desks, nice steel ones painted olive drab (O.D.) green, when I first went to work for the YA. Rather, it is the ‘clean’ part that is horribly, in all the depths of that word, inaccurate.

The opposite of clean is dirty and I have seldom had dirt on my desk and when I have it is either immediately removed or kept in a proper storage container. In some, many, instances it was actually soil but that is another distinction only understood by the most sentient of infantrymen. So for a time fraction greater than the floatability of Ivory Soap my dest was not dirty and hence within the modal usage of American English, ‘clean’.

Not so. The proper term for the policy would be messy desk and the nature of messy is almost uniquely military. 

In the same vein, the opposite of messy can be taken to be orderly or ordered. My desk is always highly ordered. But from continual experience I know that that ordering is not always apparent to other people, especially FD SCP. But it is NEVER apparent to the military mind. And therein lies the discontent.

I would be informed that my desk did not meet “clean desk’ policy. I would respond that it was neither dirty nor disordered. The only response would re reiteration. At that point, after a few years of nodding and then ignoring, I found a wonderful way to ‘nuke and pave’ the discussion.

I would ask why the minion of mindless organization was so insecure as to be unable to endure an ordering he (never she) could not comprehend? And the fireworks would begin.

No serving member of the military can admit to insecurity. It is alien to both the culture and the society. I have speculated that this is why disorders such as PTSD and Shell Shock and Funk are so much worse in the military. It is hard enough for nerds to confront insecurity, for military bogs it is, however, almost impossible. 

So they try to divert. Accusations of insubordination or mutiny are not uncommon. But if one stands one’s thesis and persists they will slink away. Until the next time. If one only brings the subject up in this solitary context. Somehow insecurity over the incomprehensible is barely, marginally, acceptable. But must not be spoken of openly. Or, at least, only by nerds who are necessary evils to preclude the destruction of the nation. 

So it’s quite a good cartoon.