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  • in reply to: Capital Flight, Capital Controls, Capital Panic #4087
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    Wow! I’m finding it hard to breathe.

    Like a good Cassandra, TAE, you described this BEFORE it happened. I’m grateful.

    in reply to: Ruminations: Faith and Humanity #4083
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    I was saddened to read of your disagreement.

    We are talking about the same things. But as with all subjects that get dissected more and more finely, eventually scalpels cross.

    Here’s where we agree:

    We don’t know the future.
    Faith is involved in getting up in the morning.
    Faith is connected to everything we do as humans.
    Uncertainty leads to doubt.

    Here are my quibbles:

    Lumping science in with religion under the banner of faith is a bit rough in my estimation. Long ago it was deemed appropriate that science would diverge from the study of interior perception and exclusively focus on exterior measurable results. Science actively maintains a peer reviewed body of agreed upon knowledge or provable experience. The repeatability of scientific experiments is what makes it not faith based. Is it imperfect? Yes of course but the ideal is a mechanism which makes all claims of knowledge assailable. It’s the best we can do at this point and I hold it sacred, because it gives me…faith.

    Right brain left brain schisms are like right/left politics. Artsies use pro right-brain arguments to justify their weaknesses in math and logic. Left brainy people dismiss right brainies as flakes. I’m left right agnostic.

    I trust experience over reading any book. Though I’ll take your suggestion and have a look….smiley face.

    in reply to: Ruminations: Faith and Humanity #4080
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    Intuition is part of experience, not faith. That is what makes it different from instinct. Faith is what you go on when you have no experience.

    in reply to: Ruminations: Faith and Humanity #4074
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    drumbaker post=3703 wrote: Moreover, spirituality of any kind is a faith-based process. Perhaps it is in the nature of being human that we are required to exercise some kind of faith at every turn. It is time that we stop making “faith” synonymous with “stupidity” and explore the notion that as Pascal said, “Faith has its reasons.”

    Faith comes as a response to risk and the unknown. This is what insurance and the retirement plan are for. These are ponzi scheme’s selling assurance that you’re taken care of. At 65 you get to claim that pension because we said so. Oh, what’s that you say? People only live to 72 years on average. Strange how that works out. What? The pensions are bankrupt!!! So you won’t get to live out your final days in a holding tank for the elderly. Sad.

    We are so cut off from our intuition which would lead us to reason differently that we are reliant on faith for everything. “There’ll be pie in the sky when you die, that’s a lie”, my grandpa used to sing.

    in reply to: Ruminations: Faith and Humanity #4070
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    Capitalism is a Faith-Based system.

    A Promissory note is the promise to pay. And with fiat not tied to gold or anything at all there is actually nothing being promised to pay. Now if that doesn’t require faith in the system then I don’t know what does.

    The system requires this faith. If I loose my job. I have to go and get another one to get money. The system does not include me growing food to feed myself. It does not include me as an independent agent of my own destiny. So, my destiny is wrapped up in the dreams and nightmares of the system. I need to concern myself with the health of the market and what direction the arrow is going (up or down). The markets are variously: sluggish, tentative, euphoric, despondent, upbeat, surging, on a tear, fearful, blah blah blah. This emotional roller-coaster requires that I ‘Buy and hold’, ‘stay the course’ ‘be rational’. But the main thing is that I have faith that the whole thing goes up. And that my faith remains unshaken.

    After one hundred years of oil powered industrialization I think a couple of generations just don’t think about faith. If it happens that they do, it comes as a creeping shock to their system and they turn away in denial. Sort of like when you’re driving down a two lane highway and as the cars on the other side of the road wizz past you ask yourself: “What keeps them on the other side of the road?”. The line. An illusion of safety.

    And we love the illusions we’ve been sold, despite the cost. Look at all the combustion engines that are used to power the dream. Having spent a weekend in the country, I noticed that the number of engines in use for the average family is simply staggering. Everyone drives a Ford F150 (8 cylinders), has an ‘office managers tractor’- lawn mower (4-cylinders), a fishing boat (4-6 cylinders), a couple a ATVs (more cylinders), snow mobiles (same and more), It goes on and on. You have to drive everywhere , so everyone is overweight. The young people have to walk on the shoulder of the road, so they are in better shape… till they get a car… or get hit by one. But all of this is taken for granted as part of the dream.

    in reply to: What Choice is in Greece's Best Interest? #4068
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    OMG or should I say OM el G!!!


    and TAE Summary in one thread!? Wow.

    Now that’s quality!!!

    Thank you. Who ever you are.

    in reply to: Ruminations: Faith and Humanity #3952
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    Nice Triv,

    The question is a bit too broad for me. I have a difficult enough time with the concept of faith in daily issues of my life, to measure my faith in humanity and its future. My faith is too local to range that far.

    Faith is a strange word. It’s like the air we breath and the ground we stand on. Even Atheists need it. Faith suggests to me an approach to what is coming down the tunnel. It’s a matter of where you are putting your focus.

    You don’t really need to have faith in God. If there is a God It’s got a universe on its plate. And If God can balance all that, well great then, we have nothing to worry about.

    You have to have faith in yourself primarily and given that we live in an addiction oriented society that is constantly telling us all the ways we are inadequate, it’s difficult to do. Instead people put a lot of faith in their stuff (toys and gadgets) that are an extension of their identity. But stripped of all that where will they put their faith?

    We need to have faith in the people around us. In that way faith is similar to trust. Trust in my mind is the plural of faith and involves a contract between people. We trust that the people behind the counter at the sandwich shop aren’t going to poison us. ‘I’ve eaten here so many times before what could possibly go wrong.’

    I suppose faith’s opposite is despair. The shock of loosing faith could easily lead you there.

    And perhaps the only antidote is for us to be faithful to the people we love and spend the rest of our time crushing our enemies. OOPs.

    in reply to: Europe: A Thousand Miles Behind #3922
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    ashvin post=3546 wrote:
    These are questions about the philosophy of interpretation… not just of ancient texts or Art, but about EVERYTHING stated, written, recorded, communicated in some manner. They are legitimate questions and, for example, are very prevalent in debates over interpretations of the US Constitution.

    If we are going to adopt a very broad philosophy of interpretation, though, we should apply it fairly and consistently to all works of expression. I don’t think we can say that the Bible derives its meaning from the interpretations of the reader, but the articles of, let’s say, Stoneleigh or Ilargi actually mean what the writers intended them to mean, or what the written words suggest they mean.

    I admire your desire to apply a philosophy of interpretation to all works of expression. But right now it apparently involves a fair number of experts who will tell us what things mean (to them). And I understand that you don’t think we can say that the Bible derives its meaning from the interpretations of the reader. That is what you said. That doesn’t mean it isn’t up for debate. And after all that is what the reformation was all about: Going back to the bible directly and having a direct relation with the word of God separate from the Interpretations of the Catholic Church.

    We have the words they wrote, the context in which they were written, and the records of other people who had direct access to them at the time. We have our own cognitive/logical abilities to examine the evidence, rule out certain meanings and accept others. When you read a book by a modern non-fiction writer, do you usually feel it necessary to consult that person directly in order to figure out what they meant? Perhaps sometimes you do, but it is not usually very necessary.

    I don’t read fiction but I get your point. But I think it’s my point actually. I also try not to read movie reviews to figure out what I think about a movie (certainly not without doing some thinking-interpreting myself first).

    This is mostly a theological question, rather than one of interpretation. I am not claiming that the Biblical God exists, so it is irrelevant to the argument over meaning.

    It seems like you’re having a hard time separating what is a priori here. God is a priori whether IT exists or not. IT existed in these peoples minds/lives before IT was written down in words. Therefore GOD is the object-subject of our discussion, one that cannot truly be either an object or a subject. You can’t just separate out the words and analyize them.

    According to the Bible, He caused the prophets to write the Biblical texts so that we could voluntarily read them, understand them and follow them, both as descriptions of historical events and theological teachings.

    I get the feeling this is a circular argument not unlike “God wrote the bible because the bible tells me so”.

    The idea that we can get that understanding by circumventing the Inspired texts and using the “smallest effort” is a bit contradictory to those goals, don’t you think?

    I concede that the smallest effort might be something you do every day for the rest of your life. And practice practice practice. The ‘smallest effort’ by my estimation is paying attention. Listening. Meditating. Being open to where things are going. This is not unlike the saying many Muslims and other people from around the world use in their search for meaning in their lives: ‘If God wills it.’
    I gather Jews are taught to have a personal relationship with God not one interpreted by experts. This is a living God concept, not the dead God concept you’re spending time discussing. This is a God of now, not of history. I’m not saying that your pursuit of the correct interpretation of the Bible isn’t worthwhile. I’m sure there will be interesting tid bits of historical info, stuff that has repeated for the last 2000 years or so. I just won’t be looking to it to find out what God intends.

    in reply to: Europe: A Thousand Miles Behind #3916
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    This debate over the true meaning of the bible is the same one that defines the debate around the questions of “What and where is Art?”

    Does it exist in the creator’s intentions from the moment it is unveiled?
    Does it exist in the words/music/paint/metal/stone that constitutes its structure?
    Does it exist in the person who interprets it?

    Most artist’s I know go with the latter. They have to let go at some point, and when they do, the art (read bible) is on it’s own to develop relationships with interpreters. As for the original writers of the bible we don’t have them around to consult as to their intentions and what we do have is a history of other people imposing their intentions on the writings.

    But If the bible is supposed to be the word of God, why do I need to consult it or worry about what the correct interpretation is? God being all powerful and knowing, can let his/her intentions known with merely the smallest effort on my part. I just have to pay attention.

    in reply to: Europe: A Thousand Miles Behind #3914
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    I may agree with most of what you say.

    But in what was a small community of bloggers on TAE, and a healthy ecosystem of opinion, we now have one message delivered over and over again, by you. It’s obvious that some people are unwilling to post for fear of your wrath. You’ve made it clear it’s just sport for you. Or chess.

    At best, your counter-propaganda campaign promoting the spread of the bankster-mob-justice meme is a feeble personal wank. (What are you going to do? Guide and direct it from Alaska? LOL. It’s just entertainment for you. It’s simply a reward for your personal RAGE).

    At worst, you are an agent provocateur looking to draw people into their own demise. (Just because I’m paranoid doesn’t mean I shouldn’t be. )

    People are waking up at the same time all over the world. Many will easily decend into rage and self loathing for having been living so close to the curtain and never looking behind. Many will find themselves taken in by hucksters offering simple relief for their blood lust. That’s history. But after the blood lust is saited then what?

    Illargi’s ongoing rage at the stupidity of our so called economic system is something that remains fresh for me because I always feel he is asking a question in the end. I feel at least he is looking for an answer. You apparently have the TRUTH. And a major source of this capital “T” truth comes from the bible in the form of GOOD and EVIL. Unconventional thinking?Seriously. Are you trying to be ironic?

    And the Chicago way? Really? It ain’t the Chicago way. It’s the Munich way, It’s the Tel Aviv way. It’s the Santiago way. It’s the Moscow way.It’s called Shock and Awe in Washington. It’s the ‘way’ wherever military thugs and bankster gangsters set the tone. But they don’t look and speak like Sean Connery ( I suppose you’re Sean Connery in this fantasy ways-of-being-lesson you’re giving).

    But does collapse dictate a collapse in the complexity of the conversation itself? When the collapse isn’t going to be happening on the internet anyway! It’ll all be up at our front door. It’ll be what we’re all dealing with while trying to be useful to those we are close to. Making hard choices about how to best take care of one another. Maybe that will require some simplistic logic. I’m here on TAE for insight. I’m not saying you don’t provide that I’m grateful for your postings and your posting of Peter was particulaly intriguing. More of that and less of the morbid boosterism, or boosterized morbidity.

    And in the end you are right it is a matter of style. In my ideal world I imagine that you’re trying to communicate.But what I see instead is broadcasting.

    in reply to: Europe: A Thousand Miles Behind #3894
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    You’re beginning to BORE.

    Get some new material.

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    Sounds a lot like: ‘Hand over all your money or the banker gets it!’

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    The May 6, 2010 Flash Crash also known as The Crash of 2:45, the 2010 Flash Crash or just simply, the Flash Crash, was a United States stock market crash on Thursday May 6, 2010 in which the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged about 1000 points—or about nine percent—only to recover those losses within minutes. It was the second largest point swing, 1,010.14 points, and the biggest one-day point decline, 998.5 points, on an intraday basis in Dow Jones Industrial Average history.

    From the SEC/CFTC report itself:

    The combined selling pressure from the Sell Algorithm, HFTs and other traders drove the price of the E-Mini S&P 500 down approximately 3% in just four minutes from the beginning of 2:41 pm through the end of 2:44 pm. During this same time cross-market arbitrageurs who did buy the E-Mini S&P 500, simultaneously sold equivalent amounts in the equities markets, driving the price of SPY (an exchange-traded fund which represents the S&P 500 index) also down approximately 3%.

    Still lacking sufficient demand from fundamental buyers or cross-market arbitrageurs, HFTs began to quickly buy and then resell contracts to each other – generating a “hot-potato” volume effect as the same positions were rapidly passed back and forth. Between 2:45:13 and 2:45:27, HFTs traded over 27,000 contracts, which accounted for about 49 percent of the total trading volume, while buying only about 200 additional contracts net.

    in reply to: Reply To: Re: I nominate this for your next series #3748
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    The Archdruid Report has an excellent article on the intersection of religion and collapse. The comments are good too.

    I found the article interesting given the great debate between Ash and RE on God’s and religions’ participation in TEOWAWKI, revolutionary reprise, inquisitional truth and justice committee, etc.

    In the west, the age of oil (merely +-100 years long) has allowed us to develop out of an under educated mass that knows the meaning of physical labour, has a basic understanding of where food comes from (and how to grow, hunt, scrape together a meal out of wild food) into an bunch of over-educated urban specialists that think food comes from the super market and work is something you delegate to others or get computers to do.

    There is no doubt we have gotten a lot out of the age of oil. Thank you dinosaurs! But any advancements we’ve achieved, have basically been bought using our energy inheritance. And most of that energy has gone to satiate our carnal desires for stuff. And now we’re going into a time of energy depletion. Add to this the fact that we’ve been told over and over again that ‘we’re all individuals’. So people think that indeed they are an island. And now we’ll all be having to work together. I can’t wait to see all the people clamoring for the management positions when there are none. LOL

    As Consciousness/social development moves up and out it is holonic in nature. It requires a solid base beneath to maintain it. If that goes then the upper levels are that much harder to maintain.

    The Buddha managed to do it through incredible self discipline. Jesus through turning the scape goating nature of humans on himself. ‘I absorb all your sins and your enemy’s sins, now forgive and get on with feeding your kids!’

    in reply to: Reply To: Re: I nominate this for your next series #3709
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    Hey Candace,

    You’ve hit it on the head. Literally. We need to think about what we think and most people aren’t used to doing that. People look to authorities to tell them what to think. Fox news, the church, the universities, these are the authorities people look to, to know what to think. These authorities are completely corrupt as Chris Hedges has repeatedly pointed out.

    But now, with the onset of decline and contraction, people who don’t know how to think at all are looking for answers. They are looking for someone to blame:

    “The long-term unemployment, the collapse of housing prices, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the draconian cuts in social spending have created a climate in which the vulnerable, the different, the marginal—from Muslims to undocumented workers to homosexuals—are blamed for the nation’s decline, White argues. This climate is fueling a culture of hate. Right-wing candidates, channeling the rage and frustration of a beleaguered working and middle class, use marginal and oppressed groups as scapegoats.”

    This is why it won’t be so easy to go out on an inquisitional tour of those who have caused this: because there will be many vigilante posses on the trail. Could cause a traffic jam.

    I think your use of the word rational is interesting too. Because the root of the word is ‘ratio’, which implies proportion. In that sense, who is to say that a rational response to complete economic collapse isn’t proportionately extreme? I think better words to use might be reasoned, justified, or equivocated. Because this is the kind of thinking people use to explain their actions. We shall see a lot more of it soon.

    in reply to: Freegold: Perspectives and Critiques #3477
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    Hey Triv,

    You’re obviously passionate and super intelligent, but I can tell you think more is more. Particularly when it comes to words.
    I’ve looked at your graphic before and quite frankly found it to be unreadable…because of all the words.

    Images don’t represent words. Words represent images, and feelings, and thoughts. Images convey thought instantly. Words must be translated. If you use a graphic do your best to remove the clutter that words bring.
    I’ve redone your graphic with most of the words removed and a few adjustments to the graphics. It’s attached.

    Gold, Fiat. It’s all fiat. Economics is the study of ponzi schemes. Period.

    in reply to: Escape from the Eurozone #3127
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    Thanks for clarifying your methodology. If the crew from Monty Python was chosen to find the offending money loving evil-doers I’m sure we could confidently leave it in their hands. Otherwise I’m sure we’d all want to doubt the restraints of whatever solution was put in place: The cure could always be worse than the disease.

    However I think your original postulation that white collar crime be taken more seriously is a given. Right now these crimes are a ticket to ride.

    in reply to: Escape from the Eurozone #3121
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    Triv, one man’s data is another man’s bulls#!^.

    RE: Moneyness is not an emergent characteristic of humans. Psychopathy maybe, but money, no. Money is simply liquid status. It’s the most concentrated form of status ever invented. It’s to a herd of goats, what crack cocaine is to the coca plant.

    Whether the number of cows, the amount of land, the size of the diamond, all these THINGS represent the aquisition of STATUS. As Rene Girard points out we don’t want to BE the expensive watch, and the fast car. We want to WEAR the expensive watch and DRIVE the expensive car. In otherwords the the thing is not the goal the ROLE is. In our society there are people worthy of the role and there are people who are not, yet aquire the STATUS through deception and deceit. But they do so because we agree to it.

    In theatre when the King walks on stage in King Lear. What makes him the king? Is it because he is the king? No. You’re in the theatre, he’s an actor. Is it because he wears the robe? No. That jewel encrusted robe is FAKE! What then, makes him the king?

    All the other actors. All those that bow and turn their attention to his every word. If an actor refuses to give the king focus…. instantly the king looses status. This is the construct that we maintain. This is why crime bosses must brutally suppress even the slightest disrespect. The structure will fall apart without absolute adherence to this rule. You may be entrusted to pick some lint off of his lordship’s robe, but never suggest it isn’t real! The robe that is. As The Who would say: it’s a put on.

    In the Iroquois nations of North America there was a committee of elder women that chose the chief. They chose someone who was worthy to lead. This was a check against ambitious men simply taking the role through politics or force or other means.

    Regarding our lizard overlords: Thinking upon this I’ve had to ask myself is it possible that I am a lizard? And lo and behold it’s true, I am Lizard. My reptillian brainstem tells me so. Exterminating TPTB sounds a bit too much like the final solution. Good luck with that. We have met the enemy and the enemy is us. I would like a clear definition of capital E evil though. To me it’s simply a perversion of consciousness.

    in reply to: Escape from the Eurozone #3098
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    My feeling is more in line with Triv on this:

    Guns don’t kill people. People with guns kill people.

    Or is that more in line with what your saying RE…. hmmm.

    But truly anything can be weaponized. Money according to Bill Still has been weaponized, but it needn’t be so.

    As you say RE, money is the objectification of all things. But this is a product of our own value system that is pervert-able. If you value a big watch and a fast car why is that? Because a big watch and fast car are inherently valuable? Or because you live in an illusion of false value. Don’t lend your friends money, give it to them.

    “If you love your money, let it go. If it comes back to you, its yours forever. If it dosent, then it was never meant to be.”

    in reply to: RE: Intuition #3091
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    I’ve been doing my best to read all the way through your posts. I’m sure there is a way to sum it up in fewer words. Data, logic, blah blah blah.

    Though I have to agree with you on this:

    I’ve reread a few posts of mine and the grammar and misspelling errors have been more than a few – not intentional, but errors do creep in when I’m knee deep in stuff I’m trying to do.

    But this is not a fault, we all are short on time. As someone, somewhere once said: “If I had more Time, I would have written you a Shorter letter”. See I have to appeal to Google to get on authority the authorship of that quote and apparently everyone has said it. Because afterall, ‘brevity is the soul of wit’.

    And then out of no-where I came across this gem:

    Anyway, I don’t trust the “establishment.” If they said the sky was blue and I could look up and see the blue sky, I’d probably take pictures and video with multiple cameras just to make sure.

    Truer words, never spoken. You’ve firmly established yourself as THE uber skeptic here at TAE, though Ash might take issue with me crowning you as such. And we can all use a little brush up on the basis of ATA. Hell I make all my shopping decision on likely baseless ATA every time I refer to the ingredients on the box. Thanks for the refresher…

    So, as I went back over your writing for a 3rd time just to make sure I wasn’t missing anything, I realized something else had creeped into your writing, ART:

    I know the oligarchs are using the good intentions of many environmentally minded people to promote their societal face ripping policies.

    I mean wow that is art!

    societal face ripping policies.

    Keep it up!

    in reply to: China, or How To Live in Interesting Times #3062
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    RE: Doomstead Flipping! That is the funniest thing I’ve read on this blog in a long time. I wonder what the fluffers do, to sell it. Granite counter tops with fresh cookies in the oven and a small bomb proof closet for the children to play in. We really need a doomstead of the week thread. Something where people can get doomstead envy. Mmmm. Doomer porn at it’s best.

    in reply to: RE: Intuition #3060
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    Thanks for your short but interesting description of the MyYourHis BigTOE. In video 12 of 18 Tom recommends that one start with meditation. Best to start with an awareness of your OWN consciousness first is what he says. Seemed reasonable to me. I don’t meditate myself, have tried it but it’s not my practice. Music is. I get plenty opportunity to observe feedback from the ‘Larger Consciousness System’ in that environment. LOL. Still I think it’s a good idea to have a practice of some kind because if you have a way to ‘zero’ your consciousness you can understand better how it is you are being affected by others.

    But I enjoyed going back to the videos, I got more out of it the second time. Thanks.

    Re the Epic debate over ATA being waged between Triv and Ash. It seems it spills over the blog like some thundering wrestling match of titans. I thought we were having a rather intimate discussion of consciousness over here in the ‘intuition’ stream till Ben Bernake reared his ugly head! The Horror!

    Triv, I don’t mind being interrupted by the more pressing need for us all to wake up to the machination of lies and deception. The Corporation vid is tres exellente! My only request is perhaps less prose and more poetry… C’est possible?

    in reply to: RE: Intuition #3026
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    Thanks for the links, interesting.

    I like HBT(his big toe). I’m a exhausted from watching it though. Speaking of appeal to authority, quoting Einstein and then saying reality is digital is a big leap. Though I suppose after reality is unified as one, it is logically two. Binary. But the harmonic series says that an event in time appears as one, two, three, four, five, six (etc, to infinity) and these arise simultaneously within the one. Hence I believe reality is still analogue. Two is simply the first harmonic after the fundamental.

    If evolution is an entropy reduction system then I suppose Love is the ultimate expression of it. Because conflict/entropy is absorbed by it’s function. Logically we are on a path far from love and entropy reduction in our present garbage producing world.

    Interesting stuff.

    RBM, I don’t think you and Peter are far from the same perception of things. Ultimately MBT’s consciousness development through meditation and Peter’s dark place at the twilight state betwixt awake and asleep are the same in my estimation.

    Curious to hear of your experience with YBT (your big toe) though.

    in reply to: RE: Intuition #3013
    Bot Blogger

    Hi Peter,

    Thanks for your excellent article. Loved it.

    Thanks also for the reference to Rene Girard. Reading him makes me blanch. For anyone that’s interested there is wonderful series on Rene Girard’s at the CBC Ideas website.

    One thing that I find missing from what he is saying is the next step. Once we have differentiated ourselves from the subject-object-model dynamic, we would realize ourselves as already the model that we desire. But how does that realization come into being given that by desiring something we are implicitly excluding it from our achievement. By achieving it we no longer desire it. It’s sort of like when people here continue to nit pick over the flavour of apocalypse that is to come. When they are already in agreement that the future is grim. Stasis is just no fun.

    in reply to: Boys in the Black Pajamas #2965
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    The boys in black pajamas ARE the police. Look at those brand new hoodies. Fresh pressed. This is just a shopping opportunity for them. Smash-window shopping, to find something nice in BLACK. Oh and look at the A for Anarchism. So neatly placed. “Ok everyone, don’t break the glass here…ok. I was practicing my A all night long.”

    in reply to: The Imperial Symbolism of Pizza Hut #2959
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    Thanks for the images and links. Cool. You might like this:

    in reply to: The Imperial Symbolism of Pizza Hut #2951
    Bot Blogger

    Damn I thought I had you!

    But actually we are getting closer to what is truth in advertising. Selling is the only measure of advertising sophistication. It is not indie art ads. So I take my point back!

    Regardless I like the Chipotle ad you use because it’s offers up an interesting test of theory. First, did it succeed in convincing you to go eat one of their tasty burritos? I imagine not, given your reaction, yet you deem it a sophisticated ad. Why? Well the ad plays on the very themes you hold dear. Industrialization…perhaps going back to the land, a more wholesome time…etc. But is that sophistication intentional? Or does Chipotle believe that is what their burrito does?

    I would say they believe. They simply believe that they are doing the right thing and that is what they are selling. One may imagine there are evil burrito bosses hiding behind the Chipotle curtain pulling your strings but you risk wandering into the realm of paranoia. I’ve been there.

    My comment about corporations was not expressing my views on China and India. It was a comment on corporations and whether or not they have a plan to disengage from the nation state, specifically the United States. They are after all transnational corporations. This is what the banks are doing with their debt obligations. They are handing them over to the tax payers of nation states and they will float above with no obligations to anyone other than themselves. The Catholic Church comes to mind as one of the first such transnational corporations that ran influence and power in the wake of the collapse of the Roman Empire. Perhaps some such arrangement is in the works. We will be obliged to align ourselves (across borders) to specific Corporate Churches.

    Personally I’m going to get my Chipotle T-shirt and baseball cap on right now so I can self identify and make my allegiances known.

    in reply to: The Imperial Symbolism of Pizza Hut #2854
    Bot Blogger

    Ben thanks for embedding the pic (I’ll figure out bbcode eventually). Glad you like it. Seems strangely accurate, though perhaps panders a bit to geeks.

    Advertising sophistication sounds like an oxymoron. It’s only sophisticated in so far as it’s effective at selling. The advertising awards are simply a way to keep the creative people who are in the industry from killing themselves. I’ve worked on a few commercial shoots in my day. When someone passing on the street would ask what the commercial was for, the auto response was, “Pampers”. This was code for “s#*& in a bag”. We were creating the bag. Sorry for the crudity.

    The declining American empire must mean something different for corporations. John Greer’s excellent series on Empire (Roman, English, American) over at the Archdruid Report has not yet addressed their role. I suspect they think they can avoid the decline part. Corporations have been parasites on the state of unis. They know that they can’t see continued growth in an economy that is saturated. Now they are attempting to move on to new hosts: China and India. After all GM, Ford and Corporate America are in the process of leaving America. They must detach their fate from the people of America and head to better waters while the USS America goes down. A new market is waiting to be sated with cars pizza etc.

    in reply to: The Limits to Mankind #2851
    Bot Blogger

    What a fascinating interview!
    It just goes to show the degree to which economists are in LA LA land.

    Older Brother: Bobby there is no Santa.
    Bobby: Yes there is.
    OB: No there isn’t
    Bobby: Yes there is ’cause I get presents every christmas!
    OB: That’s Mom and Dad…
    Bobby: No, it’s Santa.
    OB: Ok now that the arctic ice cap is melting where will santa’s workshop go.
    Bobby: He’ll get the elves to build a submarine. And he’ll deliver all of his presents by submarine.
    OB: I give.

    in reply to: The Imperial Symbolism of Pizza Hut #2850
    Bot Blogger

    Ben I await your full dissertation on Dorkology. Perhaps this pie chart will help to clarify any overlapping definitions of terminology:

    in reply to: The Imperial Symbolism of Pizza Hut #2823
    Bot Blogger

    William if you’re planning on eating yourself to death don’t do it at Pizza Hut. You’ll throw up before you get the job done. Here’s a better solution:

    Le Grande Bouffe:

    in reply to: The Imperial Symbolism of Pizza Hut #2822
    Bot Blogger

    Thanks for defining ‘dorkiness’. I agree with the definition. And I see the Dork as a strawman to the Uber Geek. Perhaps the apex of your industrial Art Ad. In advertising these are distilled characters of some target demographic. They are a middle slice out of the bell curve of human behaviour at a particular age. Looking cool and being hip is an issue for youth. This is something 20 year olds concern themselves with. This is not a real issue. This is what pseudo sophistication in advertising is all about. Being able to say you’ve left the ‘Pizza Hut’ demographic. I’m a big boy now, I eat at Mortons! Pizza Hut is courting whoever will cough up the money to buy their crap. They don’t care what demographic you are from. They just want you to self identify. BTW I’m not really sure I’ve seen all these sophisticated industrial ads you’re talking about where I am. I just see lots of dorky ads. I guess that’s my demographic.

    Why American Culture? Are there any Yanks that can explain this. Is American culture, corporate culture? I remember when Walmart came up to Canada, there was a bit of surprise at the cultishness of the corporation. The raw raw we can do it, lets stalk those shelves! Let’s do it for Jesus! What might be described as a real Can-Do American attitude. Is that what American culture is? A corporate jesus cult? Is the fact that America raced so fast into industrialization with the oil economy fueling an exploding advertising culture that American’s have no culture to look back to? No roots? Personally I don’t have a problem with not having roots. I’ll make my own. Ultimately culture is simply the group of people you have fallin’ in with whether you like it or not. (And hopefully you like it and them)

    As Jesus said: ‘The dorks will always be with us’.

    in reply to: The Imperial Symbolism of Pizza Hut #2815
    Bot Blogger

    I heartily disagree Ben. This is the kind of article that provides insight into the new ubiquitous urban culture of the world. More people live in cities now then ever before. Having dinner out at Pizza Hut is an extraordinary luxury for many. Dorky has nothing to do with it.

    This also has nothing to do with American culture. It’s corporate culture. This ad campaign cannot be judged by standards of hippness. All ads are simply selling some idea of luxury attained. Remember those pizza pop ads that looked like scenes from a sam peckinpah film? An age old story of teenage excess. This is a Middle Eastern version of the same excess and outrageousness. Just a lot more tame. But still it’s the same. The food looks like shit but the article is ok IMHO

    That said I liked your rant.

    As for fat people… well people don’t have to eat ‘American Food’ to get fat. Indian food, can be incredibly fattening. So can Thai food. ‘What They Deep Fry in Other Countries’, that’s going to be the name of my restaurant. Fat equals wealth in many countries. Corporate fast food places have isolated the secret ingredients down to SALT, FAT, SUGAR. oh yeah and bread and alcohol (both also convert immediately to sugar). Most people don’t have any idea how much salt they are consuming in a day or even what excessive quantities of salt tastes like. Just keep drinking beer! Chips, spaghetti sauce, ketchup, mustard, chutney, anything processed tends to have massive quantities of salt. Check it. And BTW, you have to double the sodium quantities given on the label.

    in reply to: What the hell has happened to TAE? #2676
    Bot Blogger

    Perhaps Ash could write a posting about the limits of complexity in the blog-o-sphere, when attempting to transition from a linear entity to an asyncronous data centric model. Expounding on how the ties-that-bind are stretched through this multiplex of perception, to the point of abstraction. How said abstraction within the context of a thermodynamic universe ultimately ends in an entopic dispersion of consciousness accumulation. He might also contrast and compare the non-linear structure of database forums, which are in effect museums of thought, with a linear structure of temporal communal congruity and awareness that comes with a model based on a singular now.

    Sorry Ash to take the piss at your expense. I’m just having a little fun. I liked your Thanatos piece. I think what’s missing more than anything else is fun, Gravity, El G, TAE Summary, oh yeah and Stonleigh and Illargi. (where are they btw?)

    in reply to: The Central Banks are Irrelevant #2554
    Bot Blogger

    AndrewP post=2139 wrote: This article is nonsense. The Central bank’s power to print money is unlimited. Infinite. Infinity always wins over countervailing forces that are finite. There is nothing to stop the Fed from buying up the entire remainder of Fannie and Freddie bonds. When they do QE4, they will buy mortgages, and this will goose the stock market even more. They can buy non-agency mortgage bonds after they have bought all agency debt. They can even buy stocks directly. The Fed will stop at nothing to prop up the stock market, because the whole house of cards is totally dependent on the stock market. The solvency of virtually all pensions, insurance companies, and banks depends on the stock market staying up. If stocks collapse, everything goes down with them, and the Fed knows this.

    Hey Andrew,
    I have to take issue with your focus on the stock market. You fail to notice how the conversation about the financial crisis is not about the value of stocks. It’s about the value of debt. Big difference.

    I used to think, wrongly, that the stock market was where the economy went down. For example, when investors buy shares of a company they own a part of the company. Right? Overall the stock market represents the perceived value of the market because it represents the perceived value of the bulk of companies making things and serving people in the economy. Right? Well partly right. The key word is ‘perceived’. When the MSM nightly news shows us that the stock market arrow went up, or down at the end of the business day, we the people are expected to have an appropriately happy or sad Pavlovian response. This is the expected limit of our perception.

    There are two factors that make up the value of a stock. Price of the stock is one. Volume of stocks traded is the other. It is completely possible with computer technology to raise the price of a stock without a large volume of trades. As has been pointed out on this site many times, two parties trading a small volume of stock back’n’forth, like hot potato, at increasing prices can raise the price the stock. The stock market IS perceived value.

    However the bond market is 10 times the size of the stock market. When a company, government or financial institution issues a bond. They issue debt. When someone buys that debt they own the company in a more real way than someone who buys stocks. Let me repeat, the bond market is 10 TIMES the size of the stock market. This is where the real deals get made. Pension funds, banks, insurance companies all focus on debt more than stocks. The stock market is for pure gambling. Banks don’t gamble. They are the house.

    in reply to: Reading TAE #2295
    Bot Blogger

    ashvin post=1895 wrote:
    What you are seeing is the latest commentary, followed by the latest feature article, followed by a few more commentaries. The reason a single commentary goes above the feature is because they don’t stay up as long, and may go unnoticed if put below the feature that stays up for a few days. You can tell the difference by looking at the tags below the post, which clearly show the author, category and type (commentary/feature).

    I get it. More is more, even when it’s less?

    I suppose I’m just reminiscing about the old arrangement. The Archdruid Report and Garth Turner’s blog do the single installment version (though John Michael Greer doesn’t use pictures at all) and they have a very healthy commentariat.

    Ashvin, you are doing a bang up job. Your writing here at TAE 2.0 has been fantastic. I’m sure it will all settle down as y’all work out the kinks. Cheers.

    in reply to: Reading TAE #2286
    Bot Blogger

    Bukko Canukko post=1885 wrote:
    Judging from his last postings, I think El G discovered the secret to Tesla Free Energy that would revolutionize the world, so “they” had to silence him. As “they” have done to so many millions of others through the years. Curse “them”!

    I wouldn’t put it past him or “them”. But he was/is one of the most entertaining writers on TAE and there are a few. Of course with the new format we have lost TAE Summary’s postings, ’cause with the new format how the heck would he/she do it?

    Nassim: Personally I found Cheryl annoying but when she pulled out her clock to impress us all, that was hilarious. I’m not smart enough to lose money in puts…

    in reply to: Reading TAE #2274
    Bot Blogger

    ‘We’re working on getting a module for streaming the latest comments from all different threads in the forum, which should help. ‘

    Hey Ashvin, Glad to hear it!

    I have 2 related suggestions:

    When 3 postings come out from you, Illargi and Stoneleigh on the same day it’s a bit like too much cake. You eat and eat and still there’s more, so you put some of it aside ’cause you can’t finish it and then it gets stale…Time your postings. May of course require sorting according to temporal importance.

    On the old site you had a great picture up front from Shorpys and then the article right away. Now there is an article stub of something else first then the Shorpys pic and then something else and something else. I can never make sense of what is the feature article. Prioritize by using those great old pics first!

    Oh yeah and do whatever you can to get El G back!! He may have been a curmudgeon but man he was funny and smart! Ask forgiveness. Tell him you’ll wash his socks…whatever it takes. 😛

    El G?? Come in….G Spot? Are you there? Miss you.

    in reply to: The Official Thread for Open Comments #1630
    Bot Blogger

    Hi All,

    I’ve been coming to TAE daily for the last 5 years. Many thanks to Stonleigh, Illargi and Ash for the education.

    I also enjoy the company of the commentariat who, have brought me closer to what is going on in the world. I enjoy the discussions immensely. The highlights for me are: Everything El G-Spot writes; the Major discussion with Dr. Tom; Scandia’s great question: ‘What is the right question?’, which is strangely it’s own answer; Updates from Beedom by Snuffy; Nassim’s insight into the Egyptian/Arab Spring, priceless;The Goldbugs and OWS crowd; And who could forget the epic battle with the many faces of Cheryl, the same Cheryl who pulled out his gigantic clock daring us not to be impressed. And yet still unable to tell the time. You couldn’t write this! Only TAE Summary could make better poetry out of what was already there…

    One of the best features of the conversations is that they carried over many posts. Topics were cooked under the gaze of many eyes. Many voices contributing from many points of view. Another is the immediacy of knowing what people are responding to.

    On the new website I find it exhausting trying to find THE conversation. Quite frankly I’m not sure there is one (1).

    Is it possible to set up a simple time based thread of whatever is being talked about right now? Call it ‘Latest Posts’. They could still link to their appropriate category, without so much futile searching to find out what’s going on. And of course TAE Summary would again have a raison d’etre.

    The fact that there are 1000 views of this ‘open comment’ thread tells me that it’s a sure hit. 😛


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