abuddhas memes - September 2002

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30/9/2

With over-the-top hype about the latest research on AmeriCanada's Darling recreational drug, I figured it was about time I reviewed the literature. MDMA Neurotoxicity - by Matthew Baggott, BA, and John Mendelson, MD comes from the vaults of Erowid and is decently recent.

On the other hand our research with the opioids, cannabis and ethanol has been progressing apace for some thousands of years and is still inconclusive - or, more accurately, disastrously conclusive for some small percentage of us. This knowledge does not lead to a general understanding of the substance in question, nor in any rational way lead to prohibition. To believe so is to set reverse causality as the socially acceptable norm. To rationalize such a belief is to set hypocrisy as a psycho-social given.

The truth about most substances of potential abuse is that for most people there is no problem. An altered state is achieved, fun is had, the "hangover" is accepted and life goes on; perchance to have been enriched. For those few of socio-neural difference the "problem" is no different than that of a hay fever sufferer. Avoid the "trigger" where possible, use medication when not possible, and do everything possible except be exposed.

For the mass of our species, very few natural entheogens (like, that stuff we can grow, man) cause any long-term impairment; and they often catalyze long-term improvement. We have certainly evolved in synch with these Gaian shipmates. In a thoughtful and discursive society, all manner of individual endeavor would be appreciated as a unique contribution - psychonauts perhaps deserving of the same support as our explorers of the outer limits.

A conclusion that is obvious is that MDMA (Ecstasy) is analogous to any other synthesized chemical. It would be foolish to assume our biochemistry is equipped to deal with either the active ingredient or its metabolic breakdown products. The illegality of the product further complicates the user's decision about use, and in fact compounds the potential problems. We have certainly evolved some degree of symbiosis with our friendly fungi and greenery. This is not so sure with our genengineered and chemo-creative products. Hey, kids, take notes.

Mixing a synthetic material such as "E" with other, possibly unidentifiable substances such as methamphetamine, active or inactive placebos, alcohol, marijuana, or most distressingly a truly mind numbing drug like PCP, unfortunately manifests in a condition of repressive laws, inadequate education, and youthful irreverance for the carnal spirit. Take care of each other. Enjoy balance...
"Because MDMA has been shown to rapidly inactivate the enzyme TPH, decreased 5-HT levels would be expected until TPH activity returns to normal. Thus, decreased 5-HT synthesis and subsequent SERT down-regulation initially appear to be a plausible explanation for MDMA-induced serotonergic changes. By examining the structure of serotonergic axons in MDMA-exposed animals, however, it is clear that MDMA can also cause axonal loss."
29/9/2

Great prose is timeless. Such is U.S. America's greatest writers actual effect on the global understanding; whether from the memetic spam of the CNet conglomerates or the well thought projections of Orwell, Hemingway; or Clemens.

On the Duty of Civil Disobedience
"All men recognize the right of revolution; that is, the right to refuse allegiance to, and to resist, the government, when its tyranny or its inefficiency are great and unendurable. But almost all say that such is not the case now. But such was the case, they think, in the Revolution of '75. If one were to tell me that this was a bad government because it taxed certain foreign commodities brought to its ports, it is most probable that I should not make an ado about it, for I can do without them. All machines have their friction; and possibly this does enough good to counter-balance the evil. At any rate, it is a great evil to make a stir about it. But when the friction comes to have its machine, and oppression and robbery are organized, I say, let us not have such a machine any longer. In other words, when a sixth of the population of a nation which has undertaken to be the refuge of liberty are slaves, and a whole country is unjustly overrun and conquered by a foreign army, and subjected to military law, I think that it is not too soon for honest men to rebel and revolutionize. What makes this duty the more urgent is that fact that the country so overrun is not our own, but ours is the invading army."
Henry David Thoreau
love
I think that if I grokked it all, I would purposefully forget that I did - spontaneous rediscovery of beauty. Alan Watts puts it succinctly and succulently in these short q 'n a's.
"In general, different states of consciousness from the normal are regarded as a form of sickness. And therefore official and institutional Psychiatry constitutes itself the guardian of sanity and of socially-approved experience of reality. And very often it seems to me that reality appears rather much the way the world is seen on a bleak monday morning in this official doctrine, i might even say dogma, of what reality is."
love
Rescending from the indescribability of IT to more earthbound matters, we are faced with IIT. Information Integration Theory is explained in all it's empirical expansiveness by Norman H. Anderson in this paper taken from his book A Functional Theory of Cognition; wherein he gives us a Cognitive Theory of Everyday Life.

Stuart Watt provides powerful evidence that, while always on (the) edge, cognitive science is not in crisis. The Lion, the Bat, and the Wardrobe: myths and metaphors in cognitive science
"I would draw an analogy with gravity: although we can counterbalance the effects of gravity to some extent, we can't, with our current knowledge of physics, remove it, so theories of gravity can be difficult to falsify. Having a mind is similar, we can't just switch it off and see what cognitive science looks like without it."
love
The Network Society - A Shift in Cognitive Ecologies?
"This work proposes that the market imperatives of consumer capitalism seriously threaten the development of what is potentially the most groundbreaking progression in human communication and cognitive technology since the 'interiorization of writing'"
28/9/2

You are CHICKEN. The cowardly meat.
What Lunch Meat Are You?
dubious thanks to Hestia Chronicles


It is strangely odd to be reviewing an essay from '95, as if that were a distant time on an alternate earth. Then, considering that we are ten years behind in these things, this will point to future AmeriCanadian potential. The Use Of Psychedelics In Dutch Psychiatry
"After some experience, he (Bastiaans) came to the conclusion that for three categories of patient treatment with LSD was advisable: psychosomatic patients with an intensive rigidity of their defence and coping mechanisms; patients with survivor or concentration camp syndromes, and patients who after many years of psychoanalysis did not achieve the prognosticated positive results.

I (Stephen Snelders) would think that a reappraisal of psychedelics in western society, and renewed research into their possible function in psychiatric research and in society, is only to be expected if the advocates of this research could find some way to stress the continuity of their work within western society, and to avoid the association with subversion and discontinuity."
27/9/2

Interviewed on CBC yesterday morning, Derek Hatfield filled us in on doing the ultimate solo act. The sail onSpirit of Canada scuds towards Torquay on the south English coast as the skipper provides daily updates; and displays his own spirit.
"The wind is blowing a cold 17 knots from the north, the sky is bright blue, the ocean is almost purple, the seas are relatively flat at 3 feet. Spirit of Canada is fully powered up going upwind at 9.5 knots with two reefs in the mainsail and small jib. Clear sparkling water comes tumbling down the deck every few minutes and fills the cockpit, it is quite cold. I sit at the rail with the autopilot steering the boat, in wonder how this machine goes like this with just the power of the wind. This is why I come out here. Wish you all could be here to see it too."
love
David Swanson restates the (again) retrospectively obvious - the egalitarian culture we proudly pretend to inhabit has become increasingly (exponentially may be a more accurate descriptor) elitist since the mid-seventies. Making Low Wages at Wal-Mart
"The official unemployment rate, of course, is about as accurate a measure as the official poverty rate. Things are generally worse than we are being told.

It's about time we recognized that, and started to think about the reasons why -- and how to change them."
love
Robert L. Forward - R.I.P. - Along with Sri Arthur C Clarke, Hans Moravec, and others, Dr. Forward brought together the fictive ether and the hard sciences; which is well elucidated by the 1981 Omni article High Wire Act. Dramatically reducing the costs of achieving space may well spell our species survivability.
"The trip would be free. The cable would slow a bit as its energy was carried off by the disappearing capsule, then regain the speed when the capsule returned. As long as more mass dropped inward toward the sun than went out into space, the space elevator would need no energy source once it had been set in motion."
love
Clarke, astronauts discuss future of space exploration
"I believe we have this capability of leading the world in this great adventure. We have to find a way to expand our presence all over space so we can ensure the survival of our species."
Chang-Diaz
love
Continuing in the futurist vein, the World Transhumanist Association is giving lots of notice of Transvision 2003 - The Adaptable Human Body: Transhumanism and Bioethics in the 21st Century

A Software Agent Model of Consciousness
"Baars has proposed a psychological theory of consciousness, called global workspace theory. (Which postulates that human cognition is implemented by a multitude of relatively small, special-purpose processes, almost always unconscious. Coalitions of such processes find their way into a global workspace and thus into consciousness.) The present study describes a software agent implementation of that theory, called Conscious Mattie (CMattie)."
25/9/2

Staring into the vault of ground-space forty feet below, with semi-gloss eyes and Adidas toes, it comes to me. What a day!

A dear love flies south and east and encounters a brand new autumn just as our Yukon falls into winter. May we all be; Above ground.

The indefatigable, implacable, irresistible, and ever enkindling yes, Mark, there is a Blog wood s lot returns to fire our cognitive kilns. A caribou gave its ness for my most delicious supper. We have not yet taken the ultimate wrong turn.

An amazing dithyrambic description of a day is rendered repugnantly resplendent. Suburban Monastery Death Poem, by d.a.levy
"your blond hair for a moment in adeles
the heavy golden light around you
lady you were beautiful & i didnt
know why!
a month later
you crept into my head
while i was sleeping
i tried to throw you out
& you just sed it was
a nice place to be"

funny no one ever noticed before "
love
On the razor's edge I tread with sure hope, understanding that my mere continuance goes against all probability; and so must be of magical incarnation. With the overwhelming pathology that co-habits my interrelation, surely I should have become raven food long ago. Biological Threats, as exposed to us by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, examines the gamut, from naturally occuring pathogens to biological terrorist weaponry. I'm going for a shower.
"Clear-cutting of forests in developing countries results in the introduction of new microbial species into human populations not previously exposed, leading to pandemics that quickly jump out of the region, growing, and ultimately--after several deadly years circling the globe--abate."
love
Directing my attention north north-west, the appendix of military installations - or perhaps the bowel of scientific endeavors - directs potential armegeddon; we pray not to rupture Gaia. What the HAARP? - How It Looks and Sounds
"At the HAARP website you might learn the third member of the triumvirate which operates the facility is the US Air Force. And that's about all you learn. Nothing is said about any Air Force activity at HAARP. Until you read this article you would never have guessed, the part of the Air Force which operates the HAARP facility is the Space Vehicles Directorate , whose primary task is planning and engaging in space warfare. Check out the "Official" Space Vehicles Directorate AF HAARP Fact Sheet to see what they want you to know. Now, why would the Space Vehicles Directorate be interested in playing with some radios in Alaska? Doh. Well, now you know."
24/9/2

Individual sanity does not multiply into group sense. We know this from so many perceptual angles that it almost goes without saying. Politicians, civil servants, doc-nurse-hospice bodhisatvas, social workers... all are fully cognizant of this and exercise their personal understanding to maximize mutual benefit. Yet we persist in advocating a democracy of the majority.

An AI equivalent to this would be to emphasize successful code in favor of useful code. Oh, yeah, we would end up with a generally attractive product with severely con(pre)scribed deficiencies; such as Bill Gate's behemoth.

What will it take? - perhaps the mass-prescription of entheogenic compounds. This is far beyond the pseudethical prescriptive ability of those we most trust (and yet who know 'better').

We must, however, put the actual cause of our mass insanity into the domain of mass acceptability. The Vancouver Institute Lecture, March 25, 2000
"Survival demands a revolution in the way we live, which in turn requires a revolution in the way we think. When there were only a few of us, we could afford to be stupid. Today, when our numbers and our ingenuity have made us a force of nature in our own right, our stupidity has lethal consequences."
love
We are not "the west". This is a fallacy of polymemetic proportions. "We" are the world, and our use of lead, and how we still prescribe it's use "over there" while proscibing it's use "here" is a prime example of denying what will be obvious in retrospect. "They" may suffer so as "We" may prosper. Deny that! The Secret History of Lead details how this potent neurotoxin sleazed it's way into our lives, and how it will be an insideously damaging legacy for generations to come.
"...one can conservatively estimate that a total of about 68 million young (American) children had toxic exposures to lead from gasoline from 1927 to 1987."
love
Fire. I don't think there is any other word that could describe the intensity of cognitive focus we need to make it sanely through the next period of our evolution. We need attention that burns yet accepts, a personal projection of infinite possibility tempered by that which is possible.
"Transtopianism differs from kindred philosophies such as Transhumanism and Extropianism in that it's much more specific about its goals and the means to achieve them."
whither ye go, ye are there

23/9/2

I am in a both unpalatable and enviable position. In order to have life I must pay. In order to have blog I must create. Order consists of balance plus ectropy minus entropy. Today consists of warmed over yet eminently vital pointers.

Entheogen Experiment

A compendium of essays, including Stan Grof's lsd & the cosmic game, this is a great place to explore - climb the cliffs of elian and the drug war, delve the dark recesses of right wing rhetoric, ruminate on the wild alchemist chronicles - you will indeed be feeling superior. Frabjous.
"They are unique tools for the exploration of the human mind and thus provide important keys to the understanding of existence. Some of the observations from psychedelic research are of such basic philosophical relevance that their systematic study would not only revolutionize psychiatry and psychology, but change the dominant scientific paradigms of our time, our model of reality and our understanding of human nature."
make the journey
from star to man,
across the immense desert
of the cosmos
to the lonely oasis
of the human soul.
Clarkeji

Aiming at the attitudes and aspects that make us the people we are, Marvin Minski's essays are available in his webwomb; including a draft of his latest book The Emotion Machine. (scroll down a bit)
"Indeed, when you come right down to it, all our attachments are made to fictions."
love
Wonder I do, not in an amazed way but rather a shake-me-'ead sadness wonder, why the diversity of wonderful (as in amazing, trans-anthropomorphic, even practical) visions that are apparently being created at an exponentially increasing rate rarely if ever inform the psyche-realm of those who would govern? Less Spending, More Security - A Practical Plan to Reduce World Military Spending is short (so even a Bush could grok it) and yet comprehensive (so we could Gorify it with adequate tedium).
"It is true that world military spending has declined in real terms by 31 percent since the high of $1.26 trillion in 1987, the height of the Cold War. However, 80 percent of this decline came from the sharp drop in spending by former Warsaw Pact nations. Despite the end of the Cold War, developed nations other than those of the former Warsaw Pact spend only 10 percent less than they did in 1987."
love
The World in 2050? A view back from the future by Nick Bostrom shows that the climate may be chillier than we suppose.
"Without the steadily improving global surveillance network, some terrorist group or scientifically-literate madman might long ago have made their own nanotech assembler and manufactured a "virus" that could have destroyed the biosphere and eradicated intelligent life from this planet."
The Real Story Behind the Dismantling of The Canadian Welfare State
"The effect of globalization has been a massive transfer of wealth into the hands of the rich. In Canada, since 1979 real wages have fallen 5% overall and over 30% for new workers between 15 and 24 years old. In the U.S., official unemployment rates hide the fact that workfare and welfare rates that have been cut an average of 43% have pushed people into saturated labour markets where real wages have fallen 20% since 1975. The richest 1/5 of the world was 30 times richer than the poorest 1/5 in 1960 but 150 times richer in 1993 and according to the UN, 3 billion people live on less than $2 a day and in about 100 countries incomes today are lower than they were a decade or more ago."
(ed: as well, 5% of the U.S. workforce is incarcerated)
21/9/2

Entering the northern fall of our discontent, it would be moot and affordable to discuss the GAI life. Should Canadians be guaranteed a Basic Income?
"Economic democracy" requires that all citizens have sufficient resources to make uncoerced economic decisions. This requires a BI so people can turn down undesired jobs. A BI offers more choice under capitalism: you can live at the minimum, go after more money, or take a job you like part time or at low pay."
love
I can think of only one rational reason for our elected representatives to not implement GAI legislation, and that is that the corporations need a source of cheap and somewhat desperate labour. With leadership conventions and eventually a general election in the offing, we must make a concerted effort to put the eradication of poverty at the top of the political agenda. Improving Social Security in Canada - Guaranteed Annual Income: A Supplementary Paper
"In the view of some economists, a GAI set at poverty thresholds and with a 100 percent tax rate on other income up to those thresholds would be the cheapest way to eliminate poverty."
love
Do I sense Libertarian bedrock underlying this apparently altruistic topsoil? Geonomics: The Citizens Dividend Liberates Everyone
"In a Geonomy, being on a first-name basis with politicians would do one no good. Instead, the well-connected and everyone else would get the same Citizens Dividend."
love
The $30,000 Solution
"The trouble with all plans for a guaranteed annual income so far floated is that they are minimal, inadequate, and the income is given to no one as a matter of right, only as charity. Charity destroys the dignity of the receiver while it makes the giver self-righteous."
love
Always amazed by the ability of humans to make subjective sense out of objective nonsense, Creationist Anarcho-Socialism must take some kind of cake.
"No obligation; no mailing list; no missionary will call."
love
The operation was a success (but the patients died)
"How media spin distorted the outcomes of a study comparing radical prostatectomy with watchful waiting."
link to: Martin Luther King essay

20/9/2
More than anything we must keep pressure on those who would use legislative or Presidential power. I feel that the alter-press, as so well embodied by the weblog community, stands a good chance of bringing a vast sea of diverse sanity to the attention of those that are so immersed in a general ideological projection that anyone of vigilance would perceive it to be particularly blind.

It is understandable, considering the reliance on the mass media that we generally attend, the mass religion we often rarely (ook) attend, but generally espouse, and most importantly the mass consumption that all but the most Luddite of us embrace, that we are most protective of the status quo.

It is also understandable that our desperate desire to protect these indefinable entities that we so inconsistantly and insincerely call freedom, democracy and the AmeriCanadian Way would render us hypocritical; even while we claim just purpose.

We have an opportunity, perhaps the only one left, or perhaps one of the very few available to any given species, to actually make a purse out of a sow's ear. Tolerance of alternate views and an acknowledged recognition of our own complicity in current events would be the first move in a truly egalitarian yet unifying reply to those who feel the need for extreme disorder in order to make their point.

Also we must grok that our Gaiaship needs implicate understanding, not explicate greed. Any group of our species that feels outside of the whole of humanity, and so perhaps only partially human, will measure themselves against the common denominator - money. This is not what I want to be judged by; and I'm sure not many do.

Being a member of the global community raises the stakes and immersion for each of us. It means that I am not only responsible for my family, local community and country, but also for the entire galaxy-revolving rock that I inhabit. Think about it.

love

There are some informed guesses that are best left unstated, some intuited conclusions that would be cruel to project. There are also those obvious connexions, and missed connections, that have already been reported. The intelligence nexus (still, if surreptitiously, run by the stalwarts of the '80's zeitgeist such as Cheney, Rumsfeld and GHWB,an ex-CIA chief) who pointedly and intentionally decided to ignore what was known, and that the Bush Administration deliberately desired a war for economic, electoral, and ideological reasons; and, obviously, control of resources.

Your own government has completed a coup d'etat. A stolen election, a re-setting of the humanitarian agenda, and a complete misdirective disregard of the domestic war on some drugs; which in fact has far more effect on us than even the most bizarre terrorist attack imaginable.
love
I wrote the above mini-assay one year ago and the Bush Administration has used up it's Al Qaeda account. In order to keep the impeachment wolves outside the gate they perceive no choice but to re-invigorate the endless war, and so maintain mediated blinkers on the so-called citizens. To para-quote a Dead Dog: we must be brave and follow the signs.

A paradigmic word I have bandied about far too glibly, perhaps, is given a blotter-full of acidic attention. The Hallucination of Hegemony
"The hegemony paradigm does offer the benefit of simplifying a bewildering world. While this simplicity may provide an effective propaganda device for various rebellions, I will argue that it does not provide a useful set of analytical tools, nor ultimately does it provide the hope of a better world it wishes to engender."
love
Compensation Culture is a newly discovered weblog, placed glistening-fresh on the left.

Rack Jite's Conservatively Incorrect
"It's a bright beautiful world to see, but if you would like to experience it as a conservative, put on a welding helmet."
19/9/2
Blue Gold
By Maude Barlow
"It is a sacred duty to help someone who is suffering from thirst. However, it is a sin to transfer water just so that people can flush their toilets and wash their cars in dry areas...It makes no sense and is ecological and economic madness."
love
Most succinctly summed up - This article assesses concerns about the potential development of new weapons and risks of mass destruction made possible by nanotechnology - Nanotechnology and Mass Destruction: The Need for an Inner Space Treaty is a vital investigation by Sean Howard into intrinsic insecurity. While a Treaty on Principles Governing the Nanotechnological Activities of States in Inner (Atomic and Molecular) Space is proposed (based on the current "outer space" treaty), upon reflection this may be quite inadequate.
"The danger of new means of mass destruction emerging from the development of nanotechnology is, by definition, as yet neither present nor clear. By the time it is, it may be too late to either eliminate or control.

The real issue, however, is not where but whether such discussions take place. In the name of our common humanity, and for the sake of our common and beautiful home, they must."
love
There is Plenty of Room at the Bottom - Nanotechnology is the awe-inspiring, historic speech by Richard Feynmann. This is a great primer on a most diminutive yet portentous subject.
"At the atomic level, we have new kinds of forces and new kinds of possibilities, new kinds of effects. The problems of manufacture and reproduction of materials will be quite different. I am, as I said, inspired by the biological phenomena in which chemical forces are used in repetitious fashion to produce all kinds of weird effects (one of which is the author)."
love
David Deutsch offers his current view of The Ultimate Computer as the implications of Feynman's insights come into focus.
"What would happen inside a quantum computer when it performs an algorithmic search? The unseemly truth is that most physicists are perplexed and embarrassed by this question."
17/9/2
Investigations with Serotonin and Hallucinogenic Agents
"Our work began with hallucinogens, branched into serotonin, and both interests are sustained today. Identification of the serotonergic mechanisms underlying the actions of hallucinogens has only spurred our interest in the different 5-HT receptor populations. The hallucinogenic project led us to examine stimulants and structurally-related designer drugs."
love
Psychedelics and the Chaos Revolution by Ralph H. Abraham provides unique insight into how entheogenic reintegration informs research at the edge.
"Seven times eight is business practice, and mathematics is when you jump in the pool in the sunshine, and there's a pattern of light and dark on the bottom of the pool."
love
Psychopharmacology and the human condition
Bruce G Charlton MD suggests that we live in an age of endemic psychopathology, one reason being the mismatch between stone age brains and silicon age culture.
love
Everything Forever, Learning To See and Model the Infinite Universe
"This website describes the land of forever. It journeys beyond our present place in time to study the shape of the motionless timeless world that existed before our time began and will be after our time ends. It discovers the world of moments from which we borrow each moment of now."
love
The Dr. Peter Briggs Interview
"Art that is being made now is vital."
love
We could analogously view the complex of human cultural multifariousness as that of a pangenetic explication of a universal need to explore the implications. So say I - Steve Jones asks Why Is There So Much Genetic Diversity?
"I've spent a long time working on snails. This seems an odd thing to do, but they remind us of one question that remains unanswered, and is effectively forgotten by many biologists: Why is there so much diversity?"
15/9/2
"A single seraphic word.

You can examine the word with a click, tracing its origins, development, earliest known use, its passage between languages, and you can summon the word in Sanskrit, Greek, Latin and Arabic, in a thousand languages and dialects living and dead, and locate literary citations, and follow the word through the tunnelled underworld of its ancestral roots ...

And you can glance out the window for a moment, distracted by the sound of small kids playing a made-up game in a neighbor's yard, some kind of kickball maybe, and they speak in your voice, or piggy-back races on the weedy lawn, and it's your voice you hear, essentially, under the Glimmerglass sky, and you look at the things in your room, offscreen, unwebbed, the tissued grain of the deskwood alive in light, the thick lived tenor of things, the argument of things to be seen and eaten, the apple core going sepia in the lunch tray, and the dense measure of experience in a random glance, the monk's candle reflected in the slope of the phone, hours marked in Roman numerals, and the glaze of the wax, and the curl of the braided wick, and the chipped rim of the mug that holds your yellow pencils, skewed all crazy, and the plied lives of the simplest surface, the slabbed butter melting on the crumbled bun, and the yellow of the yellow of the pencils, and you try to imagine the word on the screen becoming a thing in the world, taking all its meanings, its sense of serenities and contentments out into the streets somehow, its whisper of reconciliation, a word extending itself ever outward, the tone of agreement or treaty, the tone of repose, the sense of mollifying silence, the tone of hail and farewell, a word that carries the sunlit ardour of an object deep in drenching noon, the argument of binding touch, but it's only a sequence of pulses on a dullish screen and all it can do is make you pensive -- a word that spreads a longing through the raw sprawl of the city and out across the dreaming bourns and orchards to the solitary hills.

Peace."

DeLillo
love
Taking a brief stroll across the quad to the Institute for the Study of the Neurologically Typical I find myself depressingly so. Well, off I go.....
"Autistic Theory of Mind = Everyone thinks differently from me -- vastly and mysteriously -- except when shown to be otherwise."
love
I bring myself to consider the serious nature of our unnatural impetus toward violence. I don't think that there can be any question (at least one that hasn't been addressed elsewhere on this site). We are collectively nuts and yet, individually, trees of nurtured novelty.

As a cracker of unforgiving intention, and hugger of unending attention, economics is not foremost on my mind. A study of The Economic Costs of Going to War with Iraq is, any way we look at it, a reducio ad absurdum. Cost has nothing to do with ethics, and an ethical war has no connection to cost. A "just" war - such as that against Hitler - is beyond measure.
"And none of these estimates tries to factor in the dangers of a wider war."
love
News for a Synergic Earth is actually Gaia rehashed; without Bucky or Lovelock. Synergy is bilateral while unity is utterly nonpareil. I give this site kudos for the attempt to bring together Fuller's understanding with environmental concerns, but am deeply concerned that relative value, and an applicable pragmatism, is being replaced with absolutist E.Q.
"Always tell only the truth, and all the truth, and do so promptly - right now."
Buckminster Fuller
love
Predicting Presidential Scandals: Looking at Bush's New Vulnerability, by John W. Dean (!)
"History suggests either Bush or Cheney are a presidential scandal ready to happen."
love
Selkie Dreamtime
"I'm grasping at a tingle
of atmosphere
that quicksilver slips
through the fingers,
or else evaporates in puffs
like lemon light froth
in the wake of a sea beast,
like all dreams, made of mist,
even in a driving rain.
Beneath the clouds,
whispering star, sea and cave
invite participation in a selkie existence.

From tide to tide,
at least till winter mists of snow
freeze the sky then melt in the sea.
A mermaidish me
in kayak skin.

Do you wish for clairvoyant diving?
Or long more for the tingling mists
of the beached?"
photo by Patti Harrison

14.5/9/2

Enjoy a relaxing weekend afternoon at The Center of the Universe and emerge refreshed and ready to bring amazed attention to the mundane. Break habit routines and creatively engage.
"It seemed that this was the way the mind would work all the time if it were not being impeded by the narrow forms mankind had imposed upon himself through the establishment and maintenance of certain styles of civilized societies. From that point of view, it was obvious that Western Man had, step by step, backed himself into a spiritual corner from which, although he had achieved impressive control of the mundane, physical aspects of reality, he had lost something not primitive, but essential."
LET'S 'AVE A LARF - hi Janet! ...photo by Linda McCartney

12/9/2

James Higgo passed from this universe last year, but in an infinity of otherverses he thinks still. Four reasons why you don't exist - Quantum physics, logic, Buddhism and information theory is a wonderful summary that clarifies, and confirms the Many Worlds Interpretation as physics most promising uber-theory.
"All we are is our present thought. Four separate bodies of knowledge bring us this one incredible conclusion: there is a thought, but there is no thinker."

MENU

Your consciousness affects the behaviour of subatomic particles
- or -
Particles move backwards as well as forwards in time and appear in all possible places at once
- or -
The universe is splitting, every Planck-time (10-43 seconds), into billions of parallel universes
- or -
The universe is interconnected with faster-than-light transfers of information
----
Full English Breakfast
Coffee or Tea
love
Only Tony Smith could add to the above hat-loosening cognitive feast. Hours of varied amazement and confusion could be spent here. In fact I'm so amafused at the moment that Conformal GraviPhotons seem to shimmer sense. If you are not a physicist don't bother trying too hard to read; admire the fractal beauty, click links, get lost.
"The 4 GraviPhoton Special Conformal transformations are like the Moebius linear fractional transformations, that do deform Minkowski spacetime but take hyperboloids into hyperboloids and are the symmetries of superluminal solutions of the Maxwell equations."
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Ben Goertzel, a top-notch scientist in the field of generalized artificial intelligence, also has singular ability as a poet and writer; a true polymath. The Journey of the Void
"Who am I, a mere conglomeration of particles --
an organism flashing in and out of existence --
a web of learned and inherited patterns --
to explain the universe as a whole?"
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The Science Realm: John's Virtual Sci-Tech Universe is really comprehensive.
"Welcome to Quantum Reality: Virtual worlds of imaginary particles: The dreams stuff is made of: Life, the eternal ghost in the machine... This site is dedicated to the quest for knowledge and wisdom, through science, mathematics, philosophy, invention, and technology."
It's a swamp. It's a bottomless swamp, and I didn't want to get involved in it.
11/9/2

Today is about time - relative, absolute, psychological (projective, introjective), measured, unmeasured and immesurable - time. We should no more remember than project, as all else is now.

Theories of Time in Folkloristic Social Analysis covers a vast space in our understanding, using Bush I and the Gulf War as the assayed anchor and Castoriadis as the dock.
"The identity of things across time, as binding of time, depends on the power of the mind to recognize the same and to call it such. The creation of a system that encompasses experience depends upon this naming and the extension of models that cover more and more of experience. The mind is always looking for the way to repeat, to make all significance depend only upon the difference from that which has come before. It gets the connection, makes the link, hears the echo, finds the repetition that completes the meaning."
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Wind River Delivers Product Support for Latest Intel* XScale* Technology - embedded software ?? !! ?? Our time is done as free mongers of ideas beyond censorship. Now, mark my words here, eh?... coming soon to an ISP near you will be real-time re-devaluation of your self, as you be; or not be.
"Wind River is a worldwide leader in embedded software and services for creating connected smart devices."
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A site that has served ten to the forth as many pages as most of us ministerially complex mini-metier of the minor order - e.g. weblogs - enquires about whether the CIA, NSA and others are operating Anonymous Remailers. Nah,...couldn't be...(irony didn'a die but went for a brief holiday to disgratefully return to return with rebrowning of the Txian Shrubbery).
"Both presenters explicitly acknowledged that a number of anonymous remnailers in the US are run by government agencies scanning traffic. Marlow said that the government runs at least a dozen remailers and that the most popular remailers in France and Germany are run by the respective government agencies in these countries.

I ask Marlos afterwards if these comments were off or on record, he paused then said that he can be quoted."
10/9/2

Meat and potatoe (sic,erk)) speech by Noam Chomsky makes a tasty historiographic stew, delivered fully spiced on Sept. 22, 1998, at the University of Calgary - Whose World Order: Conflicting Visions. Last night's mano a mano with Peter (I'm losing my hair and don't care) Mansbridge and Noam (I'm not, and I've got flair) Chomsky on CBC seared with insightful heat, and was a juicy filet of philo sophia.
"The conflicts are conflicts with radical nationalism, radical Arab nationalism that threatens U.S. dominance. For the public it's put a little differently, varying over time. These days it's international terrorism, or the clash of civilization; tomorrow it will be something new, but it's basically the same ones all the time. The question is, who's going to be the first beneficiaries of the region's resources."
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Let's time travel to 1980 and Murray Bookchin - The American Crisis I, The American Crisis II - we are mad as hell, and not economic borg.
"What clearly illustrates the high measure of economic control is the ability of the economy to generate increased unemployment, decreased effective demand, declining capital investment -- indeed, virtually all the typical characteristics of an economic depression -- without any decline of profits or prices in its major corporate sectors. The 1930's, like later albeit more shortlived "recessions," were marked not only by high unemployment but sweeping declines in prices, profits, and investment.

The "Federal Constitution" -- itself a centralistic and nationalistic reaction to the regionally and locally oriented Articles of Confederation of the 1780s -- advanced the doctrine of a "separation of powers" that placed the national legislature, executive, and judiciary in an offsetting relationship to each other. Montesquieu, following from a long tradition on this issue, created the basis in French and American political theory for legal checks and balances that served to diminish governmental power and bureaucratic usurpation. The balancing of power came to mean a balancing of interests, a legal framework for checking the tendency of the market to preempt all other economic forms and interests.

...there are factors at work in American society that must eventually make "effectiveness" congruent with totalitarianism."
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Flash forward five years - Radicalizing Democracy - take a bow, Murray.
"They may create a two-tiered society and economy in which there will be the very affluent and the others will fend for themselves."
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Re-materialize in '98 to Edward O. Wilson leaving the tryptaminergic tribe to balloon The Biological Basis of Morality; and reflecting immaculate perception.
"For centuries the writ of empiricism has been spreading into the ancient domain of transcendentalist belief, slowly at the start but quickening in the scientific age. The spirits our ancestors knew intimately fled first the rocks and trees and then the distant mountains. Now they are in the stars, where their final extinction is possible. But we cannot live without them. People need a sacred narrative. They must have a sense of larger purpose, in one form or another, however intellectualized."
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Zipping back to our present future: From a key observer of life: a plea to save biodiversity - nothing like a war or two to redirect attention.
"My hope is that the more people hear and learn, the more they have a strong background in why it matters."
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Expect attempted memetic infection incidents, and our susceptibility, to increase in the coming days. Reframing Perception-Space (P-Space): A Quick Overview of a (sic) Unifying Concept, by Colonel Michael McKim, USAFR (ret.)
"Reframing P-Space (RPS) - the process of actively or passively altering the p-space of others (or self).

P-time, imparted by RPS, could be (relative to "real" time) discontinuous, slower, faster, or shifted (such as making things seem more recent than they really are)."
8/9/2

thenewforum.ca writes an eminently sensible ® assay of the real effect of our Senior (erk) House of Parliament's recommendation to legalize pot.
"The truly morally important issue in the decrim debate is not the wants of the recreational user but the needs of thousands of sick Canadians who believe marijuana makes it at least a little bit easier to get through their pain-filled days. Here the government has no excuse not to act quickly -- in this case, the government has no business in the sickrooms of the nation. Hopefully the Nolin committee's eminently sensible but politically impossible proposal will not distract us from that fact."
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Dated yet vital - reprised because they won't

George Bush, Skull & Bones and the New World Order is a white paper that was destined for a Japanese audience. I am constitutionally repelled by conspiracy theories, if only because having people keep quiet about things is well nigh impossible and anyway, why ascribe intent to that which may be explained by chance; Occam's razor and all that... And yet....
"The Skull & Bones members believe in the idea of "constructive chaos." By keeping their true policy intentions secret, by constantly sending out mixed signals on all critical policy issues, they consciously seek to sow confusion among both their nominal "friends" and "enemies" alike."
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Arms Sales Monitor - Highlighting U.S. government policies on arms exports and conventional weapons proliferation.
"Neither Chile nor Brazil face any serious short-term external security threats, and even credible theoretical threats are difficult to identify. Brazil has had to deal with spillover from Colombia's civil war, but containing errant rebels does not require Beyond Visual Range (BVR) air-to-air missiles. The same goes for Chile. Chile's neighbors lack both the intent and the capacity to pose a serious military threat, according to Jane's Information Group."
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P. Lutus, developer of careware like Arachnophilia, codes The Levels of Human Experience.
"In the largest sense, belief brings evolution to a halt. It stops the music of the human family, the movement that makes us who we are, that allows us to respond to nature's constantly changing requirements. Yes, belief is comforting to individuals, but it trades comfort for the suicide of an entire species."
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In the spirit of the forthcoming glut of talking noddles...Dr. Philip's Eight Easy Rules for Making It as a TV Bobble-Head
"Don't worry about being ugly.

Remember at all times. The camera magnifies and intensifies everything about you."
6.5/9/2

I felt impelled to determine now as gaiadate -.5 as we here on the farthest reaches of the weast are within a zoned-out distance of the 'wrong' side of the international date line. For some surely Jungian explication of an implicate psychic juxtaposition I find it highly disconcerting that Aussie web sites are in effect a day ahead of me!

This is not the ill-educated panic of the affected population when the calender was changed from the Julian to the Gregorian. Rather, I am rationally cognizant of the effect that datedness has on Google-presense. This is a real effect that has real affect on my bevy of high-priced talent. That would be - me - and I'm pissed...well, not really.

Pardee Keynote Symposia
Geological Society of America
Summit 2000
Reno, Nevada
November 13, 2000
"It has often been said that, if the human species fails to make a go of it here on the Earth, some other species will take over the running. In the sense of developing intelligence this is not correct. We have or soon will have, exhausted the necessary physical prerequisites so far as this planet is concerned. With coal gone, oil gone, high-grade metallic ores gone, no species however competent can make the long climb from primitive conditions to high-level technology. This is a one-shot affair. If we fail, this planetary system fails so far as intelligence is concerned. The same will be true of other planetary systems. On each of them there will be one chance, and one chance only." (Sir Fred Hoyle)

"The Olduvai 'slide' from 2001 to 2011 may resemble the "Great Depression" of 1929 to 1939: unemployment, breadlines, and homelessness. As for the Olduvai 'cliff' from 2012 to 2030 - I know of no precedent in human history."
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The Flin Flon Flip-Flop is a short diatribe by Spider Robinson, ironically printed just two days prior to our Senate's recommendation for legalized cannabis.
"In that precise spirit, I'm shocked -- shocked! -- to discover that Ms. McLellan is a typical contemporary Canadian politician. That is, a protean pile of adjustable principles prepared to call excrement strawberry jam, if the alternative is to risk offending a trigger-happy Texan.

There was a time when this country had the guts to tell America to go to hell when it was dead wrong."
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Meanwhile, back at the money trough on Ranch Pfizerland, hundreds or thousands of us are injured and killed by not only legal, but FDA endorsed Dangerous Medicine
"The FDA lacks authority to levy civil penalties for violations of the nation's drug laws, to subpoena industry records when it's necessary to investigate industry wrongdoing, or to mandate drug recalls. Under the bill just passed, companies that don't perform the mandated follow-up research on drugs the FDA approves "pending further study" still won't be fined or otherwise penalized. Instead, the FDA will now have the authority to post their names on its Web site and try to embarrass them into compliance."
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Falltime, and psychotropics abound in the forests - under the trees and poking their psilly heads out of cowpies. It would be incautious to attempt any kind of harvest, not to mention use, of these mycological marvels without authoritative guides and a knowledgable guide.

Our species' long association with these agents of insight may have been what brought us into true consciousness, and our lengthy 'western' alienation from Soma may have brought us close to true extinction. Amanita Muscaria: Mycopharmacological Outline and Personal Experiences, by Francesco Festi and Antonio Bianchi - Chemistry and Effects of Entheogenic Amanita Species, by Jonathon Ott
"The following piece details both the generic as well as the esoteric history and pharmacological profiles of the Amanita muscaria. It also introduces research which shows that psychoactivity related to this species is seasonally determinant. This determinant can mean the difference between poisoning and pleasant, healing applications, which include psychedelic experiences."
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The Fane of the Psilocybe Mushroom
"We Come Only To Dream

Thus spoke Tochihuitzin,

Thus spoke Coyolchiuhqui:

In ic conitotehuac in Tochihuitzin,

In ic conitotehuac in Coyolchiuhqui"
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Why the cult of Alcoholics Anonymous continues to rain supreme(ly sic) on the party of alternative approaches appears to me as a decided lack of imagination, courage, and scientific rigour on the part of all those lining the path of "recovery". Ketamine Psychedelic Therapy (KPT) of Alcohol Dependence: Clinical Efficacy and Underlying Mechanisms
"We have been working with KPT since 1985 and have already treated more than 1000 alcoholic patients with KPT without any complications like protracted psychoses, flashbacks, agitation, or ketamine abuse. So, KPT seems to be a safe and effective method of treatment for alcohol dependence."
If lawyers are disbarred and clergymen defrocked, doesn't it follow that electricians can be delighted, musicians denoted, cowboys deranged, models deposed, tree surgeons debarked and dry cleaners depressed?

4/9/2
Legalize Marijuana Now Says Canadian Senate - .pdf required after intro page
"It should be noted at the outset that the Committee suggests cigarette manufacturers should be prohibited from producing and selling cannabis.

(6) The Committee recommends that the Government of Canada amend the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act to create a criminal exemption scheme. This legislation should stipulate the conditions for obtaining licences as well as for producing and selling cannabis; criminal penalties for illegal trafficking and export; and the preservation of criminal penalties for all activities falling outside the scope of the exemption scheme.

(7) The Committee recommends that the Government of Canada declare an amnesty for any person convicted of possession of cannabis under current or past legislation."
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I do on occasion dear Gentle Reader reprise rediscovered research, as I did yesterday. I suppose it would be polite to let you in on my little deception of temporal freshness, though I usually do renovate the presentation, and url where neccessary. So, for those of you that have a rare episodic feeling of deja-link-vu, well right you are then.

Often this is as a result of going through the archives and finding that the page has changed location and, when googlefound, the contents enthrall me as much as on first finding and deserve a second look.

Today (yes, really, and thanks to Ethel), What Really Happened introduced me to a well graphed and presented course in The Paleoclimate Record and Climate Models. Summary below:
"A paleoclimate record has been developed using different techniques, stretching back over 2 billion years. The Earth was warmer than at present for most of this time, punctuated by infrequent Ice Ages.

The Great Ice Ages may have been caused by processes associated with continental drift and greenhouse warming.

The interglacial periods are related to orbital changes described by the Milankovitch cycles, among other factors.

In recent times, temperature changes and greenhouse gas abundances are correlated. Rapid global warming is underway and models have been developed to predict the effects of these changes."
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Only slightly (well, okay, significantly) paraphrasing Erich Shiffmann, author of The Spirit & Practice of Moving Into Stillness - here interviewed, produces an insight fit to blog.
"Q: Please say more about blogness.

Blogness is at the core of your being. As you get in touch with it you learn that you are part of BLOG. You are as natural and legitimate an expression of Nature as a tree or cloud. The creative Blog Force will then guide you through life and help you make your most important decisions.

Q: Are you saying that blogging helps you feel your essential energy with more clarity?

Yes. It promotes an energized relaxation which helps clarify your deepest longings and motivations. The links are not necessary for this, of course, but they can be sought in such a way that they help you experience your basic truth, as well as make you more intuitive."
A Course in Meditation

3/9/2

Gotta admit that our canuck version of gathering intelligence, countering counter-intelligence, making the right decision at the Tim Horton's counter (de-signed for intelli-confusion), contemplating skates at Canadian Tire, etc...: Even with the significant roaming of the information secondary roads that I do...perambulate? (oh, I think I've decided that the bicycle is humanity's greatest technological leap) - Weapons of Mass Protection: Nonlethality, Information Warfare, and Airpower in the Age of Chaos - sexual innuendo courtesy of Freud.
"The basic values inherent in airpower--deep penetration, broad reach, precision delivery, early entry--must be augmented with the ability to carry payloads whose results enforce policy throughout the operational continuum in ways suitable to the needs of decision makers in this age of chaos. Wars of divestiture have at their core the aim of restoring order with minimum destruction. Weapons of mass protection have a political utility that encompasses the changed environment for warfare and allows the United States to enforce its policies when necessary, thereby exercising its role as world leader."
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Convulsed with a need for en-lighten-mental material to shake off the dark chaos of those who pursue dialogue with bullets, I arrive at a place of beauty, passion and logic. Transformation Metaphors, derived experimentally from the Chinese Book of Changes (I Ching), makes divined order hypertextual.
"A sustainable community can only influence others effectively when its external initiatives are consistent with its own internal mode of organization."
Reweaving the Web of Life: An Interview with Carol Brouillet

Septacular the start,
serenity before the shemozzle?

We have survived three quarters of Gaian-year-two (GO2, do not collect egalitarian karma, proceed directly to the oily goal). Reality Re-Asserts Itself
"In the era of eternal youth, we shut our ever more ancient old people away, perhaps because they remind us of the inexorable biological processes which will lead to our own demise. We are, as a result of our attempts to avoid the constraints of nature, in danger of exchanging a life which was nasty, brutish and short for one which is nasty, brutish and long."
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Nick Bostrom - When Machines Outsmart Humans
"Turning our gaze forward, we can predict with a rather high degree of confidence that hardware matching that of the human brain will be available in the foreseeable future.

This leaves the software problem.

We know that the software problem can be solved in principle. After all, humans have achieved human-level intelligence, so it is evidently possible."
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Where does that leave us then, when life-extension by any means is decided-on, maintained and supervised by hGn/oSAI (hypertextually generalized, networked, optimally specialized artificial intelligence)? What if this algorithmic, powerfully adept and in effect psycho-physically omnipotent machination has access to nanotech and genengineering?

genetic engineering - 'bout time a word was coined for this - I hereby proclaim copy-yeah-right of the term and will require a royalty payment consisting of a percentage of all gross usage)

The Global Brain by Peter Russell is by no means a new-age phantasmagoria, although I do get a prostate-ianally orgasmic moment when I go outside to pee; and thinking of our connectedness while performing said release amongst the spruce and fireweed (aww, poor groundcreatures)... I feel utterly blessed..
"The changes this will bring will be so great that their full impact may well be beyond our imagination. No longer will we perceive ourselves as isolated individuals; we will know ourselves to be a part of a rapidly integrating global network, the nerve cells of an awakening global brain."
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Hold on a mo'! I mean, like, what's de-classified is a significant time warp away from what's under development...gosh, my imagination boggles considering what the ONI could be up to now... Reversing the Sounds of Silence...Hearing loss pill coming on market

One, meaning thee and me, could be "darted" with a microchip (macrostripe?) subliminally and with no clue that, from that moment, our every movement and transaction could be trackable - and most certainly would be tracked by the particularly paranoid gendarmerie.
"Now there's something better, and it comes out of an Office of Naval Research program that goes back four decades. Very small electric crystal chips can now be embedded into products to provide up to 96 bits of information when they're read by an electromagnetic scanner. (That's roughly 6 times as much as bar codes hold. It also meets the new industry standard developed by the MIT-led Auto-ID Center.) These new radio-frequency scanners, unlike the optical ones in most supermarkets today, can read the chip whether they have direct line-of-sight to it or not. And dirt? Ordinary dirt matters not at all."
And there's one primal property right that everyone has, regardless of how much or little they do. This is the ownership of their own body.

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