Saturday, June 20, 2009

"We Would Not Cheat" - Iranian Mullah

The Iranian mullahs are demanding that everyone keep the faith baby and realize they would not cheat, being holy men and all.

These leaders demand this trust in them as they use guns, clubs, water cannon, and disrespectful rhetoric on those who are protesting the results of the Iranian election. In other words they cheat as they say they do not cheat. A sure pattern, meme, and characteristic of a neoCon.

Immature democracies and mature despotic regimes call for faith and trust in the government often when their regime is being questioned.

Mature democracies, like the U.S., use the same spirit when they go into decline and want to hide the truth from the people; "state secrets", executive privilege, congressional privilege, and similar notions are advanced as reasons the government should be trusted while the evidence is being hidden from the people.

In our system the people consider that to be a failure when a government has to ask for or demand faith from the people in place of the evidence.

Faith is something for the gods, not government in the hands of mere mortals.

The congress yesterday unanimously impeached a federal judge in Texas for such behaviour, since he had demanded trust while he lied to federal investigators and sexually abused staff members.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Backwards To The Future - Moon?

Today NASA will try to launch a mission to the moon.

The folks in the Bush II regime gave this notion a nudge in the face of some resistance.

This seems like the Iraq of the space program, an appendage that will cost more than the benefits it can deliver.

Nevertheless, I hope it gleans some information we can use to rescue the human species from the Sun and/or from ourselves, whichever comes first.

UPDATE: The LRO was launched into orbit.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Russian Roulette and Election Integrity

This post has been moved to prepare for next year's posts.

A Decline Of The American Republic

Little words like "a" and "the" can make all the difference in the world sometimes.

For instance "The Decline of ..." compared with "A Decline of ..." present really different scenarios, one ultimate and one incremental.

In 1955 John T. Flynn wrote a book about American decline, which paints a different picture when compared to the picture that oral histories and traditions of Native Americans paint about American decline, even though both deal with the same subject matter.

Authors sometimes see "decline" as a form of how events are adversely effecting their own lives, and therefore, what is really being described is an author's perception of what is happening near them.

Thus, one can read two works and wonder if the authors were both talking about the same nation, continent, or even the same planet.

After looking at some of these "declines" of this and that, I notice that much of it is simply another way of saying "there goes the neighborhood".

The literary work ends up being someone projecting their own bias and prejudice into some subject matter, rather than being a comprehensive diagnosis of the decline of an empire or nation.

Getting back to Flynn, one thing is for sure, he was not afraid to write dramatically:
I lay it down, therefore, as a proposition susceptible of complete proof, that our difficulties do not have their origin in the struggle with Russia or our massive debt and oppressive taxes squandered all over the world. These are the external and visible symptoms of our illness. America is sick. OUR basic disease is that WE HAVE ABANDONED THE AMERICAN SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT. We have dismantled the American Republic and reconstructed it on an alien and corrupt plan.
(The Decline of the American Republic, page 4, PDF). He considered his thesis "susceptible of complete proof", which might be seen as an attempt to put the "science" in "political science", but that dogmatic assertion would also surely generate skepticism.

Hey, are you tempted to wonder if one man's "decline" is another man's "ascension" as I have been?

Perhaps that notion is what one author meant when he said:
"This is not a book about the decline of America, but rather about the rise of everyone else."
(The Post-American World, by Fareed Zakaria). I think we have to admit that Mr. Zakaria has learned much after immigrating to the U.S. from India, especially how to spin softly but write a big book.

Getting back to the subject "a decline or the decline", a classic example to consider is the Roman Empire.

That empire's decline is attributed to a whole host of causes by a whole host of historians.

Wikipedia has some text containing an example which might indicate that all declines have multiple "a declines", but only one "the decline" in the final analysis:
... decline of the Roman Empire refers to both the gradual disintegration of the economy of Rome and the barbarian invasions that were its final doom.
(Wikipedia, bold in original). In refined terms, the final doom of an empire is "the decline", while incremental disintegrations preceding that final doom are a series of "a decline" events.

I once compared this to the phases of an urbanite freezing to death, and the very perplexing and practically universal human behavior phenomenon of the taking off of the clothes in the final phase of freezing to death.

Who in their right mind would take off their clothes while freezing? Well, that leads to the crux of the matter.

My offer in this matter is that the one thing that is prevalent in all "the declines" is the ingredient of the institutionalization of delusion.

In the final analysis, once delusion becomes institutionalized, "the decline" is assured even when preceded by "a decline" after "a decline".

The next post in this series is here.

Monday, June 15, 2009

The NeoCons Of Iran Fool Progressives

While world leaders react cautiously to the Iranian election, many young and politically active Iranians who feel that the election was a sham do not react cautiously.

For the record, from my perspective Ahmadinejad is the Iranian Bush II, and his supporters are the Iranian neoCons; the song The Universal Soldier, by Donovan, comes to mind; but I would morph it into "The Universal neoCon" to help make the point.

Ahmadinejad has the fundamental memetic pattern of Straussian neoCon "scholarship", one of which is to revise history to fit one's own historical misconceptions and dogma. Ahmadinejad denies the holocaust as do some fake progressives.

UPDATE: Reza Aslan has an interesting post on this issue at The Daily Beast.

UPDATE 2: The "street recount" taking place massively is decisive to me.

Ahmadinejad lost and zillions of people are risking their safety to vote again in public, not in secret.

Sorry, but I give full credence to those who will vote while staring down the barrel of neoCon weaponry and declaring who they voted for.

Hundreds of thousands of people in the streets across the land, with none of Ahmadinejad's people there (except those shooting protesters) to counter, tells the story loud and clear.

This is the people's recount, and I give it all due respect and credence, but I cannot do the same for the pronouncements of a government repressing and shooting those who are declaring their vote out loud.

Message to Iran: Do a re-vote with the two major candidates, and do it with international oversight, or be considered an illegitimate government.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Rogue Storms Sneaking Up On Us?

In a previous post, I brought up the scientific expectation of the increasing severity of storms, as a result of global climate change, even though the main subject matter of that post was the Air France Flight 447 crash in the Atlantic during a storm.

One fact of that crash, that two groups of bodies were found over 50 miles apart, indicates that a mid-air breakup of the airliner occurred.

Some experts also think the events happened very quickly as well:
It is believed that the erratic speed readings may have been caused by malfunctioning speed sensors – or pitot tubes – but it still remains unclear how this problem alone could have destroyed, or brought down, a modern aircraft so rapidly. No Mayday call or emergency radio message was sent by the pilot and co-pilot, suggesting that the aircraft fell apart or crashed while they were still going through their first, emergency response procedures.
(The Independent, emphasis added). Their experience in the storm was over so fast they did not have time to send a mayday call.

The bodies recovered so far were intact, so it is possible that the plane broke up into at least two passenger-containing sections before the pilots could respond.

If storms are becoming so violent that they can rip an aircraft apart, flight strategy needs to change to avoid those types of storms which were not avoided in the past.

Airline company policy has been to save fuel by going in a straight line through many storms, and more so as the price of fuel sky-rocketed in recent times.

"Let The Planet Hunt Begin" - NASA

This post has been moved to the Ecocosmology blog.