Alabamians’ Excellence

Three day. Supposed to be the day to foray into Nawth Alibam’s Shining City on the Hill but FD SCP laid down a command decision this morning and I am sitting at Castellum SCP waiting for the weather to destroy the place.

Although that’s supposed to be better than me being flipped by the winds while motoring.

So I am contemplating some rather amusing articles.

First, an article [Link] entitled “Stressed Out? You Probably Don’t Have it as Bad as People in Alabama, the Most Stressed State.” This is one of those firsts that is actually last, since it is a backwards insult. Simply put the denizens of Alibam are least able, of all those of the states of the Yankee republic, to cope with stress.

Why is this?

Perhaps the answer is another article [Link] entitled “Climate Change Is Stressing Us Out” that I saw almost immediately after the first.

How do Alibamians – in the mode – feel about climate change? Simple answer: deep denial. 

Why do people deny something? Reason 1: they have some scientific evidence that the something is fictional. Reason 2: they are insecure and can’t deal with the something rationally or emotionally.

Which do you think characterizes the majority, the mode as it were, of Alibamians?

Answer: Reason 2.

The problem is that when you deny something it doesn’t really go away and when it does raise its ugly, slobbering head you have to confront your insecurity.

Which stresses you out.

So we may hypothesize that Alibamians are better at insecurity and thereby denial, than the people of any other state in the Yankee republic.

This conjecture certainly seems to explain a LOT. A lot about the behavior of Alibamians. How they drive. How they behave towards other people. How they pick their politics and politicians. How they pretend to be something they aren’t. 

Which is sane.

Much less rational.

But to perhaps be fair, as a result of their choices, the general social environment in Alibam heightens the stress. How other people act. How they drive. How they pretend to be religionists. How they support an oppressive political regime in the state. How they support environmental gutting. 

And, of course, because all that stress and denial has a health unbenefit, people in Alibam die at a lesser age and thus stress out their offspring who know they will too.

Nurture wins again.

But this does at least give Alibamians something to brag about in the macho olympics: the can clearly withstand stress better than effete Yankees and all them oleaginous furriners.

Bairn Abuse

This blot will be a bit different. It’s rather a warning.

Courtesy of the Alibam government, the Arab Water Cooperative has ceased fluoridating its drinking water.

This means that the health of young children is put at risk.

Grave risk.

So if you live in Greater Metropolitan Arab and have young children, move away.

If you are thinking of moving to Greater Metropolitan Arab and either have small children or plan to have children, do NOT move here.

If you are alienated by a town that has no regard for the health and welfare of its citizens, do NOT move here.

The Motley that be Human

Six Day. All Fool’s Day. So we should all feel rather comfortable and welcomed. After all, we are all fools, each in his own way.

To attempt to demonstrate this, I went to my trusty digital dictionary – not a fool when it comes to OS! but I am widely thought so by those who are MegaHard serfs and Fruit chattels. Anyway, the definition snatched from the jaws (bowels?) of the internet, the actual contemporary seat of fools:

Fool Fool, n. [OE. fol, n. & adj., F. fol, fou, foolish, mad; a fool, prob. fr. L. follis a bellows, wind bag, an inflated ball; perh. akin to E. bellows. Cf. Folly, Follicle.]

   1. One destitute of reason, or of the common powers of understanding; an idiot; a natural.      [1913 Webster]

   2. A person deficient in intellect; one who acts absurdly, or pursues a course contrary to the dictates of wisdom; one without judgment; a simpleton; a dolt. [1913 Webster]

   3. (Script.) One who acts contrary to moral and religious wisdom; a wicked person.      [1913 Webster]

   4. One who counterfeits folly; a professional jester or buffoon; a retainer formerly kept to make sport, dressed fantastically in motley, with ridiculous accouterments.      [1913 Webster]

Note that all of these are drawn from the same source the hernia producing 1913 Webster Unabridged. The dictionary not to be used around even medium sized dawgs.

I note that definition number one gathers in all Bogs, even the ones who might be exempt due to mental absence. Definition two captures some of the Bogs and most of the Geeks.

The third captures all the Nerds since nerds generally have serious reservations about being controlled by morality and religiosity. But it would also seem to capture all of the Bogs and Geeks as well since the state of religions is such that their union of doctrine and dogma is so dense as to thus exclude everyone, including most of the lower animals, from any taint of goodness. The difference is that Nerds know what wickedness really is beyond the rhetoric of of government and religious justicers. 

Number four is strangely mixed. Few of us are paid for our foolishness although all of us are ridiculously accoutered. Consider cellular telephones, e.g. Definitely a ridiculous accouterment. Similarly for credit cards and paper money. And clothing, which is supposed to be orthogonal to accouterment, is singularly ridiculous these days. 

So a happy day to all of us, the sole surviving species of homo on Tellus. Even out small fractions of Chimpanzee and Neandertal DNA cannot rescue us from this condition.

Network of Ignorance

One Day. Back to gym and a right good episode of the CBC’s “Best of Ideas” in their series on the War of 1812, specifically about the rather fumbling Chesapeake Incursion. But in and around I got to pay a bit of attention to the flickering electromagnetic audio-visual receivers and was prompted by the hullabaloo over the Naismith Pornographic Extravaganza know as March Insanity to consider some aspects of (b) things that are unpopular and important, and (c) things that are popular and unimportant.

These contrast to (a) things that are unpopular and unimportant, and (d) things that are popular and important.

I will leave sorting the four states out because I primarily want to talk about the relationship of the two states considered in the context of organization.

I am continually surprised at how inaccurate (or absent) is the average Amerikan’s knowledge (and understanding) of organizations. This isn’t just the so called man-in-the-street, which should be expanded to man-in-the-street-with-his-nose-in-a-slablet. It also includes the members of such organizations and all too frequently the people who manage these organizations. This seems to be one of those areas where we Amerikans value ignorance over knowledge. 

Some people – rather fewer than one may suppose – know that an organization is also a network that extends beyond the organization itself. But they do nothing with the knowledge. It’s rather like knowing the capital of Lower Umsquat. And they don’t use that network viewpoint to understand how their organization is and how it functions.

Hence the consideration of (b) and (c). Parts of the organization may be unpopular and important and are thus persecuted or dissolved by management and the organization suffers, falters, or collapses. Similarly, parts of the organization may be popular and unimportant and thus exalted or rewarded and thereby resources are wasted and important bit (and people) ignored and the organization suffers, falters, or collapses.

This is the situation with all organizations, including corporations and governments. I mention these two specifically because it is in these organizations that this lack of understanding can be most lethal. 

Corporations are organizations to gather money. They only gather money if people want (and buy) their products. And people usually only have to buy their products if they want to. Now, we live in an age of new. So many corporation managements think they have to be new to make money, forgetting that people like change best (that is somewhat instead of not-at-all) when it is their idea. And the corporations pretend to understand this by using advertising, which is equally broken. That is, unpopular and maybe important. We have lots of new corporations these days, often because old corporations lost track of their organization/network.

Similarly, people seem to miss that government is primarily supposed to practice the laws enacted by Congress as directed by the Executive and not forbidden by the Judiciary. It’s a maintenance organization in the main. The big thing, which people don’t understand, is you can’t call a fix-it guy when it breaks. 

Asimov proven again.

American Failure

One Day. Back to Gym. Moderately sparse. Not many weight bouncers. The podcast was an episode of the CBC’s “Best of Ideas” about fire. It was a piece that started out well and then degenerated to schmaltz about the Twin Towers Terrorism. I don’t know what the creators’ intent was but I doubt it was being alienating and boring.

Not that I am bored by the loss of life and property but the presentation was singularly ineffective for INTROs. All social emotion stercus and no real substantive content. If anyone should be ashamed it should be those creators.

But this did give occasion to reflect on a Stanley Schmidt editorial in the March 2012 ANALOG. (And YES, I am WAY behind on reading my ANALOG subscription.) He was talking rather critically about manufacturing corporations abandoning their customers by dropping old implementations to sell new ones. 

This is not a new topic to me. I have harped several times about tool versus appliance, but not so much from the standpoint of the greed of the manufacturers. This is a major problem and one totally ignored by ALL politicians, probably because they get bought by those manufacturers. 

But perhaps not? I have noted that politicians no longer worry about their legacy; what they are remembered for. Evidently they think they cannot be remembered and thus only worry about getting re-elected. Which is another problem that we need to fix. But can’t so long as we have no control over politicians.

The problem is that in the midst of an information age, we are losing information at a rate greater than we create it. Yes, a net loss of information. Take PowerPoint files as an example – and Yes, I will acknowledge that MegaHard owns the right to that name and is one of the major causes of this problem. The problem with PowerPoint is that MegaHard keeps updating the file format and orphaning all previous formats. So all old PowerPoint files are unreadable and hence effectively lost.

Now in many cases this is actually a boon since most PowerPoint files are rubbish. Rotting rubbish in several meaning of the term. But some are not and when they cannot be read something is lost.

We have gone through this before. In the Dark Ages. In fact, this loss was part of why those times were Dark. Because when the Roman Empire fell a LOT of information was lost. Similarly, the library of Alexandria was burned by superstitionists. So much for the value of organized religion. 

And we’re doing it again. But the perpetrators are corporations who are uninterested in producing tools and only want to produce appliances. 

Sadly, information doesn’t work the same way food does.

Looking around at the corporate oligarchy, I am glad to be ORF, especially knowing that the politicians are doing nothing to aid their constituents. 

American Serfdom

One Day, and back to gym. An increase in the density of schmucks and ferds. Began to think traffic signals were needed. And they just hang in the middle of pathways obstructing. 

The podcast, an episode of the CBC’s “Best of Ideas” was an interview with some journalist whose harangue was that war is the means by which organizations strip us of our freedoms.

As with most journalists these days, this was not news and definitely not original.

But the crowning pinnacle was reached by the National Broadcasting Corporation (an organization) via its affiliate WAFF [Link] who declared in their subtexting that they do not know the difference, nor the proper context, for the words “border” and “boarder”. 

Evidently editing is either dead or disposed of as an economy measure.

It is evident that the organizations have won, proving once again that human and money are orthogonal and to maximize the latter the former must be minimized.

This is the new serfdom. The vast majority of the population are illiterate, not in the sense of being unable to read, but in only reading (and seeing and hearing) things that are inaccurate and false.

We have become a nation of gossip serfs, courtesy of greed, over organization, and social media.

One more reason I am glad to be ORF.

Bounded At Infinity

Seven Day. And a lovely fawg. Walked in. Enjoyed the light scattering, so dense it was a diffusion.

And then I ran across an article [Link] “The Tech Industry Is Obsessed With Immortality.” And this generated some thinkage. 

I have read stories about immortality for years. And have come to the hypothesis, maybe moree of a conjecture, that it’s an ugly thing.

Living forever. 

Are you the only one? Then you will have friends and enemies who are only passing, never present for any significant time. You are alone.

Are you several to many? Then you will become an oligarchy or dead. Depends on whether you dominate the temporaries or they dispose of you.

Are you all? Then things are static, always the same people and things, and boring. So why live?

On which note, what happens when your brain fills up? A forever of drooling asentience?

And, to quote the Kingston Trio, “I don’t like anyone very much.” So why put myself in pain? When the planet is populated by bubbas and bozos, death is a relief. And the only escape.

So why forever? What’s missing? From my view or theirs?

To say nothing of when Sol reaches out and consumes Tellus.