Philosophy Day 6440

Too close...

Too close…

“I will permit no man to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him.”
― Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) Founder of the Tuskegee Institute, a black school in Alabama devoted to training teachers.

In a recent post in the Second Life Forum a person stated 10-15% of the residents ‘obviously’ have less than average intelligence. Which of course there is no way to objectively measure. One would have to test all residents. The Lab is not going to give out contact information for all the users. Thus, for practical purposes: it is impossible to know.

So, what was that person actually doing? And what might you think about the speaker’s level of intelligence?

Another pointed out the statistical FACT that it would have to be 50%… which is applying broad generalized stats to small specific groups. Something reasonably educated people know doesn’t work.

There is the probability that the population of SL would be similar to the RL world population. However, we know Internet access and a computer are required to access and participate in the Second Life community. That certainly would skew the numbers based on economic status and geographic location. I could keep adding factors to suggest how the stats are skewed and in which direction. It would still leave us guessing and dealing with opinion.

It is the sayings of those people we admire for various reasons that we often use as a measure of intelligence or wisdom and allow to shape our thinking. From the combined wisdom and knowledge humans have aquired we can build our personal knowledge and beliefs. It is then my belief it is no longer intelligence or the lack of which I see in others, but their level of ignorance being different than mine.


The War on Free Speech Escalating

This week I think the war on free speech is escalating. I read Drudge Report each morning. It tells me what mainstream media will be talking about tomorrow or the next day. Today it leads with 7 articles about attacks on free speech.

For those unfamiliar with the Drudge Report, it is a ‘news aggregator’. Very seldom does Mr. Drudge actually include any of his writing in the Report. So, it is like Feedly, Newsify, gReader, and other aggregators.

Image – Drudge Report is popular. The stats are approaching 1 billion page views per month.

Today it points to articles from; CNN, NYT, WaPo, The Sun (UK), Mirror (UK), Whimn (AU), The Hill, CBS Sacramento, Rolling Stone, Reuters, Yahoo News, Bloomberg, NBC, Daily Star (UK),, USA Today, Chicago Tribune, Zero Hedge (considered a conspiracy site), AP News, Axios, Politico, FNC, SF Gate, and that is just a partial list from today.

Drudge Page Hits – 8/7/2018

A number of sources proclaim Drudge Report as extreme right-wing. If you read the list above, you’ll wonder how that is possible. Blue is Left and Red is Right. Uncolored text is center or unknown. My list is taken from today’s Report and I took them as I found them. I skipped some like The Smoking Gun because I don’t recall ever seeing them in the Report and didn’t consider them representative. Those I listed I see almost every day.

The Report’s stories are pointed to without comment. Other than a modified headline which leaves little, if any, room for spin. So, Drudge Report bias, if it exists, can only come from their selection of articles. The significant majority of articles are from Left and Center-Left sources. So, it is the Left claiming one pointing to their words is extreme right-wing? Really!?!  Continue reading

Facebook and Free Speech, Done?

Facebook has abandoned the ideas of free speech and diversity of thought. We know that from a recent speech given at a publishing and technology conference by Campbell Brown, Facebook official. He announced FB would be censoring news based on its internal biases.

Would they really do that? What might they decide to censor? Well, measured usage statics from numerous sites and sources show they already are and what they are censoring. Thinking is, FB is just getting started.

All Hail the King

All Hail the King

A good report on what is happening data-wise is on the hardest hit site, The Gateway Pundit’s coverage Zuckerberg’s Announcement.

The new media site The Outline started the reporting on the impact of Facebook’s changes. Once people started realizing how pervasive the impact is the excitement started. Continue reading

Politics: The Memo is Released

In America, we have an aversion to government intrusion into our lives and business. Our basic idea is each human is a free sovereign answering only to a higher supernatural power and we Americans join in a political union to form a government that serves the people, not rules, and laws we all agree to live under. This necessitates a need for our government to be transparent and open to investigation by its citizens.

The nature of humans to have diverse agendas and beliefs complicates the process. A need to protect information from those that would use it to harm us or use it to abuse others for personal gain and yet remain an open and free society greatly complicates the government process. Thus, a complicated weave of laws controlling a government run by our elected representatives is supposed to strive to keep us safe and abide by our, the people’s, decisions and will.

Our system has designated selected people to exercise the investigative and overwatch duties. The Memo is the result of these duties and oversight. The information is now being released to the public for all citizens, and the world, to read. Continue reading

Happy New Year 2018

Wish you all the best for this year… may you find gorgeous shoes on sale everywhere you go, may the lovers in your life treat you as royalty, may the chocolate you eat not add pounds…

Happy New Year 2018

Happy New Year 2018

There are many sources of fake news and abusive people being revealed. Politicians of all parties are revealing themselves as members of the establishment party. More and more often it is the Establishment against the people. THEY are interested in power and control. We struggle to stay free.

For 2018 you will need a variety of news sources to be able to see the chess game of propaganda in play. Every October outrageous allegations are made. October is the time for them because it leaves no times for court cases to determine facts before the election. The American ideal of innocent until proven guilty is systematically being destroyed and allegations are decided in the court of public opinion. Continue reading

Net Neutrality and the Gullible

Ciaran Laval responded to my criticism of his post regarding Net Neutrality in the previous article’s comments. Ciaran opposes the coming proposed Pia-change in the FCC Internet regulation. There is lots to talk about. See which of us you agree with.

The magic of unicorns

The magic of unicorns

I still am not sure Ciaran has read through the FCC document to which the media is reacting. He quotes a point from the FCC’s Myth vs Fact sheet, an accompanying document. I strongly suggest you read it. Ciaran’s one chosen ‘myth’ from 14:

Broadband providers will charge you a premium if you want to reach certain online content.

What are they saying? Is this the idea that the ISP’s will charge you more to access Netflix or Hulu? Has anyone ever seen their ISP make such an offer or place such a limit on your service? No. It has never happened.

Ciaran continues quoting from Myth vs Fact:

This didn’t happen before the Obama Administration’s 2015 heavy-handed Internet regulations, and it won’t happen after they are repealed.

Ciaran calls the last part a statement of hope. But, consider. The fact is it did not happen before Obama started trying to put the Internet under government control. But, is the ‘won’t happen’ with a return to a free market Internet just wishful thinking? Or is there something to base it on?

What we know…

There is a saying, “The only thing we learn from history is we don’t learn from history.” That is a paraphrase of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel ‘s comment, “We learn from history that we do not learn from history.” In a longer comment he said, “What experience and history teaches us is that people and governments have never learned anything from history, or acted on principles deduced from it.”

A more telling quote of Hegel’s I like is, “To be independent of public opinion is the first formal condition of achieving anything great.

The quotes don’t mean we can’t learn from history. There are people that do learn from history. We have 6,000+ years of written history. We know what freedom, the free market, and competitive commerce generate. Humans haven’t changed in any significant way in all that time.

So, the forces that keep the Internet growing and prices dropping as speed and quality improved before 2015 will still be in place. So, the ‘hope’ is a well-founded belief and a very probable result.

We also know that government regulation drives up prices, unfairly. The ‘unfairly’ being that because rich and poor have different spending patterns government regulation will affect those groups differently.

A 2016 study of government regulation on prices by Dustin Chambers, Professor of Economics, Salisbury University, titled: How Do Federal Regulations Affect Consumer Prices? shows Poorer Households Spend More on More Heavily Regulated Goods and government regulation drives prices up. Check their methodology before you try and disagree.

More… link below.

What is Net Neutrality in 2017?

Ciaran Laval is on about Net Neutrality and the coming December 14th meeting of the FCC. Ciaran buys into to the mainstream media viewpoint things are getting worse with the pending rules change. I see it the other way. I take a long view and consider the principals that debatably created the greatest economic engine in history, the free market.

Cave Mushrooms

Cave Mushrooms

Ciaran sees current efforts in the FCC as something out of a “dystopian novel”. Well, if we were talking Atlas Shrugged I would agree, but we aren’t.

Quoting Ciaran,

The proposal is not consumer friendly, and consumers are letting the FCC know that. The proposal is not being welcomed by many tech companies and is a glaring example of how officials ignore consumers and fail to serve the public.

Is the proposal ‘consumer friendly’ or not? The answer depends on what you know about the proposal and the principals of the free market. On a purely personal, short-term basis the uninformed will think not. A deeper understanding of the free market gives us the clue that competition is always better for the consumer. Continue reading

San Antonio Church Shooting

This injustice brings up the ongoing gun control debate. Everyone wants to stop these acts of violence. But, to do that we need to know the cause of violence.

In the middle ages (1330 AD) when the Black death swept the world killing 60+% of the population the list of most of the preventives and cures were things we consider silly; Aromatherapy, Religion, Rotten Treacle, Live In a Sewer, Let Leeches Suck You Dry, Eat a Spoon of Crushed Emeralds, Wash Yourself With Urine, Smear Yourself With Human Poop, Rub Your Wounds With a Live Chicken, and Kill Jews.

However, they did come up with the idea of quarantine. Unfortunately, they did not understand fleas and rats also needed to be blocked.

Now we understand about bacterial and viral diseases and how they spread. So, we will most likely be able to control the current Madagascar outbreak of pneumonic plague, which is air born and can kill in 24 hours.

But, we obviously aren’t able to control the violence we are seeing in Las Vegas and San Antonio. Continue reading