Archive for February, 2010

Human Scum: Exhibit A

February 26, 2010 9 comments

Reality shows, which have dominated TV since 2000, often celebrate different types of human scum. While most are merely cringeworthy or slow trainwrecks, there are a few where it is impossible to feel any sympathy for the “stars”.

Operation Repo is one such show. It is not possible to feel any empathy, let alone sympathy, for fat ugly scum who repossess peoples stuff. This is especially true in an era where the “capitalists” who “own the world” are being propped up by taxpayer money. There is something obscene about a society that degrades and screws over average people, while rewarding the well connected.

Here is the show website: Operation Repo

Here is a clip that foreshadows what will happen one day.. hopefully to completion.

Fairness, not Capitalism, is the Issue.

February 26, 2010 10 comments

Even though this article is from The Guardian, I could not have said it better.

Let me highlight a few paragraphs..

Plato first argued the case for proportionality – and it is telling that justice in so many cultures is signified by a pair of scales. Retribution should be proportional to the crime. But so should reward be proportional to our extra effort. It is a fundamental part of human beings’ hard-wiring. The scales symbolically declare that justice is getting our due and proportional deserts.

Functional societies require a high degree of fairness, unless the society is in a period of high growth (USA 1960- 1970). Barely functional violent societies can exist, but they are will either not last long (western roman empire) or not go anywhere (india, china, japan).

The irony is that capitalism if it is run properly is a means for people to get just that. If they are brilliant entrepreneurs or innovators then it is fair that they should get their proper due desert and make considerable if proportional profits. In fact, inventions are never the result of one individual light bulb moment but the consequence of a lot of social and public investment. Thus a proportion of the profit should go to the state as taxation, as its due desert for having collectively invested in the infrastructure and cumulative stock of knowledge from which invention draws – not least so it can repeat the exercise for the next generation. But the big point is that big rewards are justifiable if they are in proportion to big efforts – because big effort grows the economic pie for everyone. Profit is ethical to the extent it is proportionate to effort and not due to good luck or use of brute power. Taxation is ethical to the extent it is proportional to what the state has collectively provided.

Society depends on most people following the rules, without coercion. But people will not follow rules that are highly unfair, and coercion has its limits.

Few capitalists think like this. Instead they like to characterise themselves as individualistic hunter-gatherers, being able to eat what they kill – and if they kill more than the next man or woman, they get to eat more. My property is my own because I and I only have sweated my brow to get it; I have autonomy over it and no claim to share it, especially by the state, is legitimate. This is the cult of the investment banker or financial trader out to cut the next big deal or be a nanosecond faster than his or her competitor to buy or sell some financial instrument. It is only fair, they argue, that half a bank’s revenues should get paid out in bonuses after each year’s trading. The hunter-gatherers have to divide the kill once a year – and the annual bonus-fest is a kind of primitive celebration of their prowess.

Greedy people like to rationalize their greed.

But not even hunter-gatherers hunted alone; they worked in packs and teams. And we also know that they quickly worked out the role of luck in being successful They might not find animals to kill, not because they were not good hunters but because unaccountably there were no animals to kill. But if they returned to the cave empty-handed they would expect to share in some other hunters’ kill. Co-operation and a fair hand out of the spoils was an essential part of the hunter-gathers’ existence – if only for survival’s sake. The primitives knew that if you don’t run an economy and society fairly it quickly becomes dysfunctional, but this is not part of today’s banker worldview or culture.

Capitalist like to say they are clever when they are merely lucky.

Moreover the trading in money is not so much more valuable than any other form of economic activity that it deserves such privileges. This is not God’s work. It is an old-fashioned rigged market by a bunch of smart insiders who have managed to get away with it for decades because hard questions were never asked about fairness or proportionality. And to add insult to injury, when the sky fell in on what was a gigantic Ponzi scheme it was governments, backed by ordinary taxpayers, that launched a bail out to save the economy – but in the process also bankers.

Rigged systems can exist as long they do not overextend themselves.

Of course, intellectual mistakes were made about risk management techniques. Assumptions were made about economic behaviour that proved wholly wrong. But at the heart of the financial crisis – and the criticism of the recovery – lay disregard for fairness. The bankers cast themselves as hunter-gatherers who owed nothing to anybody and could eat what they killed careless of tomorrow. Banks carelessly ran down the capital at the core of their balance sheets, not replenishing and adding to it – but paying it out in dividends and bonuses. If they had paid out just 20% less, calculates the Bank of England, between 2000 and 2007 they would have reserved more than the state paid out in bail-out capital.

The problem is hubris, even more so than greed.

Bankers understood none of this then, and little of it now. They have a tin ear to fairness. But that was the consequence of allowing markets to be as rigged and jerrymandered as the financial markets have been – with no leverage caps, no rules on derivative trading, easily circumvented rules on capital and an anything-goes attitude to financial trading. Capitalism was run abusing all the principles of fairness. When cave dwellers were unfair, they died. When capitalism is unfair, we have financial crashes. Ethics and justice, it turns out, are the indispensable values to underpin successful capitalism.

We are soon going to find out how that story ends.

Any thoughts?

Dr. Manhattan Quotes

February 25, 2010 26 comments

A few quotes by the character of Dr. Manhattan from the movie/ comic “Watchmen”. I agree with these ones..

A live body and a dead body contain the same number of particles. Structurally, there’s no discernible difference. Life and death are unquantifiable abstracts. Why should I be concerned?

This statement is much more meaningful than you realize. Consider bacterial spores, prions or even two identically damaged cells, where one will recover and another that will die.. the line between ‘live and ‘not live’ is far hazier than you realize.

There is no future. There is no past. Do you see? Time is simultaneous, an intricately structured jewel that humans insist on viewing one edge at a time, when the whole design is visible in every facet.

We perceive time as linear and unidirectional. The important words are “we perceive”

I would only agree that a symbolic clock is as nourishing to the intellect as a photo of oxygen to a drowning man.

Most human talk and perform actions that do not address the real problem, because no one is confident they can succeed.

I’ve walked across the sun. I’ve seen events so tiny and so fast they hardly can be said to have occurred at all, but you… you are a man. And this world’s smartest man means no more to me than does its smartest termite.

Required reading for any person, especially western civilization-type white guys. In terms of impact, humans are as important as termites. We may, one day, have as large an impact on earth as blue green algae.

The morality of my activities escapes me.

Morality is what humans like to believe.

Even if I can’t predict where I’m going to find you, I can turn these walls to glass.

You are only human!

She says I am like a god now. I tell her I don’t think there is a god. And if there is I’m nothing like him.

Because I do not care about humans, unlike the gods conceptualized by humans.

Nothing ends, Adrian. Nothing ever ends.

Causality and randomness are a bitch!

In my opinion, the existence of life is a highly overrated phenomenon.

It is..

Why must I save the world I no longer have any stake in?

If you want to behave like apes, don’t expect me to care.

I am tired of Earth. These people. I’m tired of being caught in the tangle of their lives.

I am tired of humans.

Anything that can happen does happen.

Will explain this in a separate post. Potentially the most brilliant line in the book/ movie.

I can change almost anything… but I can’t change human nature.

It is not that he cannot change human nature, but the result would be more problematic than you realize.

Laurie Juspeczyk: Everyone will die!
Dr. Manhattan : And the universe will not even notice.

But most humans cannot face that reality.

They claim their labors are to build a heaven, yet their heaven is populated by horrors. Perhaps the world is not made. Perhaps nothing is made. A clock without a craftsman. It’s too late. Always has been, always will be. Too late.

I do not care about suicidal apes.

What do you think?

Konrad Zuse and Modern Computing

February 24, 2010 Leave a comment

When most people read about the historical development of modern computing, they hear about Babbage, Turing, ENIAC, Colossus, IBM 305, IBM 360s. They rarely hear about the Z1, Z3, Z4, Z5. These machines and their creator are overlooked for many reasons, including the fact that they were developed in the Third Reich and their creator was not an anglo-WASP. However the machine I am writing this post on and the one you reading it on, and indeed any digital computer is not the descendants of babbage differential engines, ENIACs or similar machines. They are the descendants of Zuse’s machines and concepts.

You can read more about him here: Konrad Zuse

From the wikipedia entry..

Konrad Zuse (pronounced [ˈkɔnʁat ˈtsuːzə]; 22 June 1910 Berlin – 18 December 1995 Hünfeld) was a German engineer and computer pioneer. His greatest achievement was the world’s first functional program-controlled Turing-complete computer, the Z3, in 1941 (the program was stored on a punched tape). He received the Werner-von-Siemens-Ring in 1964 for the Z3.

Note the date- 1941, the fact that it was Turing-complete and the program was stored on punched tape as opposed to hardwired into the machine like the ENIAC and Colossus.

Zuse also designed the first high-level programming language, Plankalkül, first published in 1948, although this was a theoretical contribution, since the language was not implemented in his lifetime and did not directly influence early languages. One of the inventors of ALGOL (Rutishauser) wrote: “The very first attempt to devise an algorithmic language was undertaken in 1948 by K. Zuse. His notation was quite general, but the proposal never attained the consideration it deserved.”

Note the attempt to demean his contribution to science, when even the guy who created ALGOL considers Zuse as the first.

In addition to his technical work, Zuse founded one of the earliest computer businesses in 1946. This company built the Z4, which became the second commercial computer leased to ETH Zürich in 1950. Due to World War II, however, Zuse’s work went largely unnoticed in the UK and the U.S.; possibly his first documented influence on a U.S. company was IBM’s option on his patents in 1946.

His indirect influence was very likely behind IBM evolving from decimal and analog computers in the 1940s to binary, digital computers with programs as software in the early 1950s. Remember that most working computers in the world were decimal, hard-wired machines- as late as the end of the 1940s.

In the late 1960s, Zuse suggested the concept of a Calculating Space (a computation-based universe).

He suggested that the universe is a computer simulation in the 1960s, more than a couple of decades before that idea became somewhat acceptable.

He started as a design engineer at the Henschel aircraft factory in Berlin-Schönefeld but resigned a year later to build a program driven/programmable machine. Working in his parents’ apartment in 1936, his first attempt, called the Z1, was a binary electrically driven mechanical calculator with limited programmability, reading instructions from a punched tape. In 1937 Zuse submitted two patents that anticipated a von Neumann architecture. He finished the Z1 in 1938. The Z1 never worked well, though, due to the lack of sufficiently precise mechanical parts. The Z1 and its original blueprints were destroyed during World War II.

Note the similarity to modern computer architectures, but this one is from the mid 1930s!

Improving on the basic Z2 machine, he built the Z3 in 1941. It was a binary 22-bit floating point calculator featuring programmability with loops but without conditional jumps, with memory and a calculation unit based on telephone relays. The telephone relays used in his machines were largely collected from discarded stock. Despite the absence of conditional jumps, the Z3 was a Turing complete computer (ignoring the fact that no physical computer can be truly Turing complete because of limited storage size). However, Turing-completeness was never considered by Zuse (who had practical applications in mind) and only demonstrated in 1998.

A request by his co-worker Helmut Schreyer for government funding for an electronic successor to the Z3 was denied as “strategically unimportant”. In 1937 Schreyer had advised Zuse to use vacuum tubes as switching elements, who at this time considered it a crazy idea (“Schnapsidee” in his own words).

Zuse was not enamored with vacuum tubes, and preferred something more reliable. But the decision makers had no clue and did not give him enough resources.

I might add more stuff to this post later or write a second part. Lets see..

Evolution is Driven by Attrition not Optimization: 1

February 24, 2010 7 comments

One of biggest piece of bullshit popularized by popular psychology, evolutionary psychology and delusional academics is that evolution is driven by optimization. But is it true? If you look at evolution as it has occurred, in both the biological and technological milieu, one nasty truth becomes evident.

Evolution is driven by attrition, which is often random. It is not about survival of the fittest, but the luckiest.

Optimizations at best provide more cannon fodder for attrition. Let me give you a few examples..

Trilobites: This group of creatures survived for a very long time (about 300 million years), and were fairly diverse.

Trilobites (pronounced traɪləˌbaɪt, meaning “three lobes”) are a well-known fossil group of extinct marine arthropods that form the class Trilobita. Trilobites first appear in the fossil record during the Early Cambrian period, 540 million years ago, and flourished throughout the lower Paleozoic era before beginning a drawn-out decline to extinction when, during the Devonian, all trilobite orders, with the sole exception of Proetida, died out. Trilobites finally disappeared in the mass extinction at the end of the Permian about 250 million years ago.

Trilobites had many life styles; some moved over the sea-bed as predators, scavengers or filter feeders and some swam, feeding on plankton. Most life styles expected of modern marine arthropods are seen in trilobites, except for parasitism. Some trilobites (particularly the family Olenida) are even thought to have evolved a symbiotic relationship with sulfur-eating bacteria from which they derived food.

But they died out in great Permian–Triassic extinction event. Curiously another group occupying a similar environment survived.

Nautilus: Note that they are far less robust, less diverse and more fragile than trilobites. Heck, they even evolved less..

Nautilus (from Greek ναυτίλος, ‘sailor’) is the common name of marine creatures of cephalopod family Nautilidae, the sole extant family of suborder Nautilina. It comprises six species in two genera, the type of which is genus Nautilus. Though it more specifically refers to species Nautilus pompilius, the name chambered nautilus is also used for any species of the Nautilidae. Having survived relatively unchanged for millions of years, nautiluses represent the only living members of the subclass Nautiloidea, and are often considered “living fossils.”

Fossil records indicate that nautiluses have not evolved much during the last 500 million years. Many were initially straight-shelled, as in the extinct genus Lituites. They developed in the Cambrian period and became a significant sea predator in the Ordovician period. Certain species reached over 2.5 metres (8 ft 2 in) in size. The other cephalopod subclass, Coleoidea, diverged from the Nautilidae long ago and the nautilus has remained relatively unchanged since. Extinct relatives of the nautilus include ammonites, such as the baculites and goniatites. Nautiloids were much more extensive and varied 200 million years ago.

So what is it? Evolutionary adaptation/ optimization? In that scenario, the trilobites win hands down. They evolved and once literally covered the ocean floor of shallow seas and oceans, and swam in them. Some argue that they were dying out, but that is speculation. The objective fact is that the ‘P-T event’ wiped them out, ALL of them. So why are they dead and the Nautilus alive. Luck?

Spanking Women: 01

February 23, 2010 21 comments

A few comments made by me on another blog and a previous post are the inspiration behind this post.

The question: Are there ‘markers’ of tolerable behavior in women (paid or unpaid)?

I would say.. Yes (but read the fine print). I found long ago that the willingness, response and attitude of an adult woman to being spanked had a rather strong correlation with her behavior, sexual and non-sexual. Before I go any further, let me clarify what I am talking about.

Spanking a woman is not about hitting or intimidating her. It is about something very specific, namely a woman who is a willing (and often eager) recipient of a moderately painful and humiliating spanking, mixed with sex. Why something like this would appeal to women is best left to your imagination.

I should also make some important points about such spankings:

1. Only a significant minority of women enjoy them.

2. Sensation, not damage, is the objective.

3. It has to be mixed in with sex.

4. It covers a range of  sensual to punishment type spankings.

Contrary to what feminists and their defenders preach, a significant minority of women are turned on by pain and humiliation. The caveats are- it should feel ‘safe’ and it should be moderate. I am emphasizing the ‘safe feeling’ part because women are paranoid, and they have to be relaxed to enjoy things. They tend to overdo many pleasurable things, such as food, precisely because of an innate feeling of insecurity, largely due to them projecting their own behavior onto others.

So why would the willingness to get a bare bottom spanking correlate with a better attitude in adult women?

My hypothesis:

1. If she is willing to get a very pink and sore bottom from you, she is probably into you. Many who are willing to try grow from curiosity to liking it (and then almost demanding it).

2. Any woman who will willingly get over your knees, squirm, kick and sob is not too big on micromanaging her or your life. She can let go..

3. A disproportionately large percentage of women who like it, also like affection and sex afterwards. It is not just a stand alone emotional release.

4. Masculine, ball-busting, uptight and ideology obsessed women are repelled by the idea of getting spanked. It selects out women who are undesirable for other reasons.

5. A far larger % (but still a numerical minority) of women like it than have tried it seriously. Maybe it is a proxy indicator for feminine behavior, not so much submissive as less bitchy.

A word of caution: Use your rationality and common sense. I am not responsible for any problems caused by practicing anything said or implied in this post, because they are just my observations and musings. I am not responsible for your actions.

More in another post.

Categories: Escorts

Opening a Card Locked Hotel Door

February 22, 2010 Leave a comment

Low tech defeats high tech..

Categories: Uncategorized