At which point did your confidence in the movement falter? A Conversation on the Future by News Genius (Ft. SR_thePangloss & Walter Crunkite) 8

Like I said, I’ve always had my suspicions, but I began to staunchly reject it over the past few months as I continued to research some of these concepts in network dynamics.

That’s the confusing stuff though..what really convinced me it was all a farce was some of this recent stuff on normative social behavior.

Anyway: just to be clear, I have not totally rejected leftist politics. I still consider Chomsky’s conception of anarcho-syndicalism to be a viable institutional design. Ultimately, what he (& especially Bakunin) espouse is the truest form of leadership, i.e. one who is driven by a purpose and pursues that purpose in a way that inspires those around him to follow, without the need for any manipulation or coercion and always in terms of free-association and “opting-in”. Not surprisingly, the methods in which Bakunin gained clout and instituted change back in the day, are now coming back in style. They call it open agile adoption.

Also, I didn’t mention this, but organizational culture is a huge issue and one in which OWS utterly failed to address (duh..). This is partly why none of the Occupyers could even express what it was they believed or what they wanted, and when they finally did express that in their list of demands it was all leftist rhetoric with absolutely no concision or sense of purpose. It was just a mess…

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

Only to be convinced otherwise? A Conversation on the Future by News Genius (Ft. SR_thePangloss & Walter Crunkite) 8

Although I admired a few things I saw in the Occupy movement, I always had my suspicions. The big ones:

  • This is an inherently privileged group. The bit of data we have supports this, (20% made $100,000+; see previous links) but it’s sort of a given that if you have that much time to participate in protests and camp out in a park, someone is supporting you. Of course, some of that support came from political donations and community support, no doubt.
  • It all happened too fast, and was bound to deteriorate (as it has). People describe OWS as “organic” but this was anything but. “Organic” meaning the time to grow and develop an accountable infrastructure and build institutions in which humans can actually accomplish something. By no means did this occur. It was actually rejected. Instead, OWS functioned as a non-conserved network. To put it simply, they did not value relationship-building. Rather, information spread in the same way disease spreads.

I don’t mean that in a pejorative way (our neural pathways work in a similar fashion), but this is an important point. In a conserved network, content input remains relatively stable. The connections (“nodes”) are chosen and controlled for, and display clique-ishness. This is a fundamental aspect of institutional design. Within non-conserved networks, content input is very random and tends to fluctuate greatly. Furthermore, there is now real established framework in which information gets passed on (e.g. viral infections, social media), it just hops from node to node, in a seemingly random manner (patterns eventually emerge though).

Network theory is on fire right now in the academic world, so here’s a few resources:

This is the kind of shit that the NSA is building super computers to uncover btw..that’s a different story, tho.

Main Point:

  • Until we figure out a way to harness quantum computational power, humans simply cannot function well within these types of social networks. These sorts of networks have the “mob mentality” effect on us. There’s simply too much “noise” and we have an incredibly difficult time making any sense of it. This is why we developed institutions to work in, as early as 10-15 thousand years ago. Think of it like this: what’s easier, deciding between 3 different brands of cereal on the shelf, or 300?
  • This brings me to my last point about normative social influence. We are incredibly social creatures. That is what were built for (empathy, law of reciprocity, etc.). We’ve known this for decades, but just recently we have started to see that normative social influence was seriously underestimated all these years.

Here’s a few concise power point slides on the subject, but there’s tons and tons of research out there. What killed the occupy movement is the very thing that supposedly set it apart (i.e. it’s rejection of structure and limited hierarchy). Humans simply can not function in these sorts of social arrangements.

Conserved network cascade:

Crazy-as-shit (non-conserved) network cascade:

source: x

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

March 31st, 2014

The Quibit will be here so soon it’s ridiculous… especially since Lawrence Livermore Lab (NIF) has figured out fusion… ( my dads wife works there) I have the blueprints for a fusion fueled spacecraft called “VISTA” that can go to mars and back in 146 days…

Add a comment

Does this mean that you found promise in the movement, A Conversation on the Future by News Genius (Ft. SR_thePangloss & Walter Crunkite) 8

Ehh..somewhat. A few major points here:

  1. They made a lot of noise and brought attention to the issue of wealth inequality. This was great. Also, the fact that it carried the emotional weight to be able to spread around the world is awesome.
  2. They were somewhat diverse, in that their clever rhetoric (we are the 99%) and lack of cohesive political demands or affiliation, really brought them broad emotional support from the public. However, the actual demographics were — not surprisingly — pretty narrow. It was essentially a bunch of fairly young, well-educated/affluent, white people. Of course, the demographic surveys are of poor quality and I could only find one that had more than a couple thousand respondents.
  3. For those who really paid attention, I think they also shed some light on issues of free speech.
  4. It was a time of creativity and experimentation. Overall I think it definitely changed the climate of things, and for that, I commend those involved.

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

Barbaric commercial sealing industry of Newfoundland and the Magdalen Islands. Inuit Allow Themselves to Be Manipulated and Exploited for Canadian Government Pro-Sealing Propaganda by Captain Paul Watson (Ft. Sea Shepherd International)

6.9-7.4 million…

The most recent estimate on the number of harp seals according to a study published in July of 2013.

3x…

The increase seen in harp seal population (tripled!) since the 1950’s, according to data from a study published in 1979, Density-Dependent Processes and Management Strategy for the Northwest Atlantic Harp Seal Population. This was an insightful study, as it sought to find just how in the hell these seal populations continued to increase considering the intense harvesting that has gone on since the 1800’s.

12 Million Tonnes…

The metric weight in fish that the harp seal population consume each year (Source: x). While these puppies may be awfully cute, the fact of the matter is that they have decimated the cod population in the surrounding waters (w/ a little help from mankind) and if they were not harvested in a controlled manner each year, they would do much more damage.

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

Show other contributors +

The commercial quota for non-native people is 450,000 a year. Inuit Allow Themselves to Be Manipulated and Exploited for Canadian Government Pro-Sealing Propaganda by Captain Paul Watson (Ft. Sea Shepherd International)

<5%…

The percentage of harp seals harvested from 2011-2013, relative to the total population, with .05% (400,000) being the most in the last five years. In 2009, 280,000 seals were harvested and, in 2010, 330,000 saw their demise (Source: x)

1,337…

This is the number of species who are on the U.S. endangered species list. Just some perspective, some of these species have less than 1,000 males left on Earth. Of course, most of these species aren’t nearly as cute and cuddly as harp seals. Some notable examples:

  • Grizzly bear (estimated 35,000 in U.S.)
  • Black bear (estimated 800,000-900,000
  • Just about every type of island fox of the coast of CA (roughly 2,500)
  • The jaguarundi (uncertain)
  • Etc..

So, while Ellen is busy taking selfies in protest of the necessary population control measures instituted to keep a thriving species in check, we actually have a ton of ecologically vital species who are on the verge of extinction. Crickets..

Below: a jaguarundi; equally as cute as the harp seal..not as cuddly

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

Show other contributors +

There are these things called ‘fossil fuels.’ 5 Things to Know About Ukraine by News Genius

In this case, Russian natural gas, 80% of which travels through the Ukraine. Naturally, disputes between Russia and Ukraine over this arrangement have occurred off and on since the dissolution of the USSR.

Due to the fact that these disputes often lead to short-term gas crises in the EU, they obviously want to mediate as best they can. Also, it couldn’t hurt if they started running the show, right? The EU made a big move around 2005-2006, when they expanded their INOGATE initiative, which has 4 guiding principles:

  1. Enhancing energy security.
  2. Convergence of member state energy markets on the basis of EU internal energy market principles. [my emphasis]
  3. Supporting sustainable energy development.
  4. Attracting investment for energy projects of common and regional interest.

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

Show other contributors +

Governments care about their distribution and sale. 5 Things to Know About Ukraine by News Genius

According to Marcon International:

Ukraine is important to world energy markets because it is a critical transit center for exports of Russian oil and natural gas to Europe, as well as a significant energy consumer. Ukraine’s geographic position, linking East and West, while also holding critical warm water ports on the Black Sea, has made the country a trade link of growing importance between the former Soviet Union and Europe for energy and other goods.

In the absolute simplest terms here, this is essentially a fight over the control of distribution. Russia desperately needs to maintain influence in Ukraine, and has invested billions in Ukrainian infrastructure. At the same time, the EU desperately needs natural gas at a low price. Whoever has the most influence in Ukraine will have leverage in any business dealings.

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

Show other contributors +

What some would call 5 Things to Know About Ukraine by News Genius

According to one of the most in-depth books on the subject, Coup d'Etat: A Practical Handbook, I think it’s safe to say that — given the claims are true — this would certainly be characterized as a coup.

The actors here use the term “midwife” due to the way in which the West view this opportunity, i.e. to hastily “birth” a pro-Western bureaucracy, primarily in order to secure natural gas infrastructure in the Ukraine. From Coup d'Etat: A Practical Handbook:

…If we were revolutionaries, wanting to destroy the power of some of the political forces, and the long and often bloody process of revolutionary attrition can achieve this. Our purpose is, however, quite different: we want to seize power within the present system, and we shall only stay in power if we embody some new status quo supported by those very forces which a revolution may seek to destroy. Should we want to achieve fundamental social change we can do so after we have become the government. This is perhaps a more efficient method (and certainly a less painful one) than that of a classic revolution.

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

Show other contributors +

Coup d’etat. 5 Things to Know About Ukraine by News Genius

Although somewhat counter-intuitive, a coup d'etat does not actually require any military-type force to intervene (though, it helps..) in order for it to be characterized as such.

The U.S. has historically been the foremost organizer of regime changes around the world. While all coups have traditionally been thought of as a threat to regional stability, modern political “scientists” have challenged this thought with the notion of democratic coup d'etat.

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

Show other contributors +

Marcus Tullius Cicero Writing on the Wall: Social Media - The First 2,000 Years (Introduction) by Tom Standage 11

Also, check out some of Cicero’s work here on site:

De Officiis (On Duties)

  • Dedicated to his son, Cicero the Younger, the elder statesman gives his views on the duties of civilized man.

Against Catiline

  • Arguably one of the most famous speeches ever given, Cicero brought back the philippic with this one, and fired some major shots!

De Republica (On the Commonwealth)

  • As many Romans had the tendency to do, Cicero extols the virtues of Roman government, and examines just what kind of people it takes to make it all work.

This video is processing – it'll appear automatically when it's done.

Show other contributors +