'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrity

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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 1st, 2017, 5:43 pm 

Paul Anthony » March 31st, 2017, 7:21 pm wrote:
Athena » Fri Mar 31, 2017 1:41 pm wrote:

True what I can find in is not today's news, but just about everything has a history.


History is written from the perspective of those who won. It may be more accurate than the current news, but it is not always the whole truth. :-)



Nothing is the whole truth. However, people in the US might want to understand what oil has to do with our economy and therefore what it has to do with economic swings and our military actions, before voting for someone who sucks money out of defending our people from disease and ignorance and increases our debt for military spending. We need a much better understanding of where our resources come from and what we will happen if we can not access them, and a better understanding of banking and what controls the value of the dollar. Our Declaration of Independence can also be called a Declaration of Responsibility and our education for technology is producing our children to be products for industry but it is not preparing them to be citizens of a democracy.

How many people know Baghdad is the historical doorway between east and west and Germany's attempt to build a railroad to Baghdad was one of the reasons for the first and second world wars. So yes, when the US invaded Iraq it was about more than oil. As the Germany we defeated, we have slashed domestic budgets and built our military power, to be used for defending our economic interest globally. This was not always the defining feature of the US. Actually, we fought a Revolution to avoid being taxed for such military spending and had a very weak military force at the start of the second world war. We can take this to a discussion of Sparta and Athens and the political ramifications- but I don't the science community is prepared for that discussion.

My point is without knowing history, we are poorly prepared to be citizens of a powerful democracy.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Paul Anthony on April 1st, 2017, 6:22 pm 

Athena » Sat Apr 01, 2017 2:43 pm wrote:

My point is without knowing history, we are poorly prepared to be citizens of a powerful democracy.


And your point is valid, but sometime during the 2nd World War we ceased to be citizens of a democracy and became unwitting (or uncaring) citizens of an empire. If you want to know what is likely to come next, study the rise and fall of all the empires that preceded this one.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 2nd, 2017, 2:17 pm 

Paul Anthony » April 1st, 2017, 4:22 pm wrote:
Athena » Sat Apr 01, 2017 2:43 pm wrote:

My point is without knowing history, we are poorly prepared to be citizens of a powerful democracy.


And your point is valid, but sometime during the 2nd World War we ceased to be citizens of a democracy and became unwitting (or uncaring) citizens of an empire. If you want to know what is likely to come next, study the rise and fall of all the empires that preceded this one.


Oh no, in the thread about feelings I got on my soap box about what the 1958 National Defense Education did to the US, and here you are saying "sometime during the 2nd World War we ceased to be citizens of a democracy". Why does it seem like no one has ever read my post? For years I have explained what happened and you are telling me I need information?

Turchin's book "War and Peace and War" is one of the best books I have ever read about the rise and fall of civilizations, and I would make this required in all high schools.

However, understanding what happened to the US is also benefited by knowing the history of Sparta and Athens, because Germany was the Sparta of the modern world and the US was the Athens of the modern world. When these two countries went to war with each other, Sparta won and ruled Athens for 30 years. Socrates fought in that war and was Plato's teacher, and Plato taught Aristotle. What all these men say is a reaction to losing that war. Now fast forward to the first and second world war. The US helped its allies win those wars, and the first time it adopted much more of Germany's education model, adding vocational training to public education and using public schools to mobilize for war and support the war effort. Still, education for citizenship remained that priority purpose of education. Until the Eisenhower administration.

In 1958 Eisenhower addressed congress requesting they pass the National Defense Education Act, in response to increased military and industrial control and Sputnik. The US always demobilized at the end of wars, and when the second world war started, it had one of the weakest military forces. It rated something like 17 th meaning the US was much weaker than many smaller nations. It was our use of public schools and industry that made it possible for us to mobilize for the second world war so fast, but air warfare and nuclear weapons changed everything. We did demobilize after WWII, but mobilized again for the Korean war, and never again demobilized. The USSR gaining the nuclear bomb and Sputnik guaranteed the military industrial complex that was formed during the second world war, would never again be demobilized. Eisenhower warned of the dangers of the Military Industrial Complex, but we have ignored his warning and I get attacked for talking about it, instead of people paying attention to what happened. Before modern military technology, patriotism was the most important part of winning wars, so education for citizenship remained our priority. WWI and WWII and finally the ability to deliver nuclear bombs changed that.

If I have missed anything in the explanation of how the US was changed into a military industrial complex, please tell me what that is because I am working on book explaining all this. Only when democracy is defended in the classroom is it defended and we have not done that since the National Defense Education Act, except in a few school districts where the necessary information is tied to state history. Eisenhower praised our domestic education when he asked congress for the change in education, and the act was to last only 4 years. It was not to permanently replace our past education for citizenship. The social, economic and political ramifications of this change in education are huge.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Paul Anthony on April 2nd, 2017, 3:51 pm 

Athena,

I liked your post mainly because you have the time-line correct, but there is more to the transition from democratic republic to empire than just education. Education is a tool which can (and often is) used to shape the attitudes of the populace,

When pride of country (patriotism) was taught in schools we only fought wars that had a purpose evident to all. We could have stayed out of WWI, but patriotism and faith in democracy justified our involvement. We almost stayed out of WWII, but then there was Pearl Harbor and patriotism aroused the people again.

Korea followed while patriotism was still strong, but the purpose for the war was a bit vague. Then, Viet Nam made many realize we were not fighting for democracy. We were fighting to support the military-industrial complex.

Viet Nam marked the end of the draft. The people were no longer willing to send their children to fight wars that had no clear purpose. It is ironic that the volunteer Army consists mainly of young men and women who join because of their (and their families) sense of patriotism. But wars are no longer fought to spread democracy. Even if that was the purpose, intervening in the internal affairs of other sovereign nations is empire building.

During the Cold War, many small skirmishes were fought against our enemy, the USSR. But the USSR never intended to invade the US, and the US would never invade the USSR. We fought proxy wars.

9/11 is the only time the US has been attacked since Pearl Harbor, but we weren't attacked by a nation. Still, that event aroused feelings of patriotism that seemed to justify (for some) invading a few countries - even though those countries had not invaded us.

Patriotism was valuable in the past but it is unwarranted now that it is used to further the goals of the powerful few while doing nothing for the well-being of the many.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 3rd, 2017, 11:36 am 

Paul, would you like me to flesh out the explanation of the Military Industrial Complex? Have you read Tocqueville's "Democracy in America" written in 1830? That book should be another must read for high school students. He warns that our Christian democracies will become despots minutely controlling our lives. Many believe we have come to this. Aldous Huxley is quoted as saying, "In the past, personal liberty and political liberty depend to a considerable extent upon governmental inefficiency. The spirit of tyranny was always more than willing; but its organization and material equipment were generally weak. Progressive science and technology have changed all this completely."

Charles Saraolea wrote "The Anglo-German Problem" to warn the world Germany was mobilizing for war and he was ignored until the beginning of WWI. He quotes Dr. Friedrich Naumamm "The war of future is a problem of economic organization of the most difficult nature and the highest technological achievement, such as has never been hitherto demanded from any army." He goes on to explain the importance of industry to modern warfare.

I have repeatedly said the US adopted the German models of education and bureaucracy. That education is for the rapid advancement of technology useful to the military, and understand, this is not just advancing our weapons, but the industry that means taxpayers. My problem is not a lack of information but figuring out how to organize it, because this education also means destroying family order and traditional values, increasing our national productivity by doubling our workforce with the women who once stayed at home, now joining the workforce. Realize the communist were the first to "liberate" women. Immediately their economy grew, and there was also an increase in divorce and abortion rates, and women and children began falling below the poverty level. From our own experience, we can add to this women and children increasingly being involved with crime, both as victims and perpetrators. About a decade after the change in education, we announced a national youth crisis and my son and daughter were part of that. That is what began my reseach. A national youth crisis is not a personal problem, but a national problem, and it began with the change in education.

But what is said about education, means nothing without understanding the adaptation of the German model of bureaucracy. The German model of bureaucracy is Prussian military bureaucracy applied to citizens and this was the key to fulfilling Tocqueville's prediction of Christian democracies becoming despots. This is a huge cultural change take is directly related to change in education, and it begins with destroying national heroes and praising efficiency. In the past, our bureaucracy was extremely inefficient. If a person died the bureaucracy or the industry would be in turmoil because how a job was done depended on what a person was good at doing, and how he wanted to focus his energy. When that person died, no one was sure how to do his job, and everyone in the organization had to adjust to a new person who could do things completely differently. Also, it may have been the person's brother or son who took his place. Personal connections were the most important part of getting a job, not merit. There are excellent reasons for changing how we did things, but know this also means instead of educating everyone to be leaders, everyone is now educated to follow the orders, and the control has shifted from individuals to policy that is written by a committee and everyone who wrote that policy can die and the organization, like a Prussian army, will march on as though nothing has changed. This organization is very powerful and it also crushes individial liberty and power.

Frank Gervasi explains "The Executive Chaos" we had before a complete reorganization of our governing bureaucracy. His 1949 book "Big Government" explains the transformation that took the US from a relatively weak and inefficient nation to the Empire that troubles you today. The transformation did not stop here. The huge increases in the powers of the president should have everyone alarmed but we have not paid attention to any of this very serious political stuff. We don't notice the truly important political decisions are being made without our knowledge of them. The books are written but who is reading them? Not the science community that is so proud of knowing truth. In the past, these folks may have demanded to know what is happening, but with education for technology we have shifted from feeling responsible for our institutions to relying on the experts to do their specialized jobs efficiently. Just want Eisenhower warned us against, and by the way he should know the dangers of the Military Industrial Complex that his administration embedded, with new government connections to research and media. Compare the billions of dollars spent on military research and production and military actions with what we spend on researching real enemies like AIDS and cancer and obesity, or the destruction of our environment. Excuse me, but I am really pissed!

Books warned against giving government these new powers. More books warned about the dangers of new connections between industry and government created during the war years. Is anyone paying attention? Being an empire is not just about ruling the world. It is also about being subjects. Tocqueville warned us of this in 1830. Let me say there are good reasons for every change, but the end result may not be what we want. I ask for one thing, that public education return to education for citizenship so we might gain control over our lives, rather than being subjects, charged, fined, feed and taxed into the poor house, and powerless to do anything about it while industry has all the control. With an economy that forces women to work rather than care for their families, and dumps the working poor on the streets with their children, and may once again leave them to suffer pain and disability or die because they can not afford medical care. Trump's budget is not defending the people. He can only increase the strength of the Military Industrial Complex and the ignorance of the masses can be very depressing.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on April 3rd, 2017, 10:29 pm 

Athena wrote:Books warned against giving government these new powers. More books warned about the dangers of new connections between industry and government created during the war years. Is anyone paying attention? Being an empire is not just about ruling the world. It is also about being subjects. Tocqueville warned us of this in 1830. Let me say there are good reasons for every change, but the end result may not be what we want. I ask for one thing, that public education return to education for citizenship so we might gain control over our lives, rather than being subjects, charged, fined, feed and taxed into the poor house, and powerless to do anything about it while industry has all the control. With an economy that forces women to work rather than care for their families, and dumps the working poor on the streets with their children, and may once again leave them to suffer pain and disability or die because they can not afford medical care. Trump's budget is not defending the people. He can only increase the strength of the Military Industrial Complex and the ignorance of the masses can be very depressing.

The masses that matter have never been concerned about books and science - they are more concerned with PQ than IQ. Therefore at present it seems that they don't really care that their president is lying about facts here and there, and is an emotional baby, because he is just like them, and that makes them feel empowered. It's high time that intellectuals in the West wake up to the fact that the truth in one's minds eye is only for idealistic dreamers, while the economic truth on the ground is for the real democratic masses - the truth that can fill a person's belly and pumping heart. This is why I have been drawing people here back to the truths of The Selfish Gene and The Evolution of Cooperative Behaviour - the guts and balls of human living, rather than the intellectual gymnastics of would-be social engineers. You can't control nature no matter how much you analyze and frame it, so you have a choice: get onboard the dragon and ride it just like the majority, or face it's fiery jaws.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 5th, 2017, 11:40 am 

Mossling, I am not sure I agree with everything you said, but I am frustrated by the mass's failure to demand important information, and pathetic failure to use to math to understand our reality and things like the consequences of having to have constant economic growth, meaning increasing populations, intensifying population density, coupled with replacing humans with computers and robots, and globalization. We must keep the uncontrolled population growth around the world healthy and happy, right? Now there is insanity! We can't make, use and throw away stuff fast enough to keep everyone employed and well fed. Exactly how does a Service Economy work? Where does the money to pay for services come from?

Some insist we should return to the gold standard. What would that do the economy? What does not having a gold standard do to the economy? What is the relationship between the value of the dollar and other currency? How can we be self-governing if we don't even know to ask these questions?
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Paul Anthony on April 5th, 2017, 12:37 pm 

Athena, Those are all good questions, The answers would require many separate threads.

Geopolitics is a multi-faceted issue. While education is key to understanding it all, education (or it's lack) doesn't explain it all. Economics alone is a subject beyond the comprehension of the vast majority, and for those few who have knowledge of the subject, there is disagreement. If the average person understood what the Federal Reserve's goal of 2% annual inflation means to him - a reduction in the value of the dollars in his pocket - people would be outraged. Since the creation of the Fed, the US dollar has lost 97% of it's purchasing power.

And yet, as important as I believe economics is, those who claim to be economists cannot solve all of the world's problems. A stronger economy in one nation detrimentally affects other nations in a world where all nations trade with one another. There will always be winners and losers. The losers resort to behavior (like war) that affects the rest of the world. And war makes some nations winners, no matter who wins or who loses the war. The US is the largest armament dealer in the world, followed by the UK. Russia is third. Sadly, war is good for some economies.

If everyone understood the ramifications of economics there would be civil unrest. I'm all for transparency, but sometimes that could make things worse.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on April 6th, 2017, 6:43 am 

Athena » April 6th, 2017, 12:40 am wrote:Mossling, I am not sure I agree with everything you said, but I am frustrated by the mass's failure to demand important information

Well what's your answer to that failure then?

We must keep the uncontrolled population growth around the world healthy and happy, right?

Is there really a "we"? There are currently the truthists and then the worker/consumers, it seems. And the worker/consumers have just won the most recent US election. They only listen to the language of consumption, which is most often made possible by a job. So if you 'talk' jobs and consumption - the more luxurious the better, then you win their ears. And perhaps they will only begin to think about healthy consumption habits when their bodies or minds are too sick to work, or their environment is completely polluted or inhospitable; the standard "if it ain't broke, why change it?" conservative mentality.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Braininvat on April 6th, 2017, 9:53 am 

https://www.whitehouse.gov/nsc

This can't be a good sign.

(in case, that screen changes, here is what it says ATM: "Check back soon for more information.")
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 6th, 2017, 11:16 am 

Trump is using his power to keep the masses ignorant.

http://legal-planet.org/2017/01/24/earth-day-2017-should-be-the-next-massive-rally/

Perhaps no policy area has faced more immediate attack from the new Trump administration than the environment. Today, he signed executive memoranda reviving both the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Keystone Pipeline. He also ordered Environmental Protection Agency employees not to speak to the press or disseminate information on social media.


Does anyone remember Reagan and how he told us it is not necessary to conserve oil, and then slashed domestic budgets and poured money into military spending, including granting arms to mid-eat countries and establishing Sadam in Iraq, and Bin Laden? He also cut Carter's environmental measures. And we need to be aware this involves control media to keep the masses ignorant. What is going on is so insane and I am not understanding how some people maintain the power to do this?
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on April 6th, 2017, 11:44 pm 

Athena » April 7th, 2017, 12:16 am wrote:...control media to keep the masses ignorant. What is going on is so insane and I am not understanding how some people maintain the power to do this?

I think it is because of simple economics.

1. All living things have evolved to prioritise energy efficiency.
2. Humans can either be efficient through cooperating in a long-term social setting or cheating in a short-term social setting.
3. In established civil societies there is a basic 'game' of cooperating efficiently within a long-term open-ended social vision.
4. Citizens who believe that there is an impending collapse to civil life prepare for the worst by upping their efficiency through betraying the social contract that they have with their fellow citizens because those people are not going to be around much longer to chastise them, in any case, and after the civil collapse, people are going to need whatever resources they can get their hands on.
5. So civil society exists as long as a long-term (open-ended) social vision is maintained, but think about what social pessimism and End of Times eschatological thinking brings to this situation.
6. Hopefully now it is simple enough to understand what is going on in countries that embrace traditional Judic prophesies, or any community that predicts an unavoidable apocalypse. A race to the bottom ensues :/
7. So the scientific truth is very important - prophesised supernatural apocalypses are apparently the result of insanity, and that insanity becomes translated into the economics - the integrity of the circulation system - of a society.

I got all that from Dawkins and Axelrod.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 8th, 2017, 1:24 pm 

Mossling » April 6th, 2017, 9:44 pm wrote:
Athena » April 7th, 2017, 12:16 am wrote:...control media to keep the masses ignorant. What is going on is so insane and I am not understanding how some people maintain the power to do this?

I think it is because of simple economics.

1. All living things have evolved to prioritise energy efficiency.
2. Humans can either be efficient through cooperating in a long-term social setting or cheating in a short-term social setting.
3. In established civil societies there is a basic 'game' of cooperating efficiently within a long-term open-ended social vision.
4. Citizens who believe that there is an impending collapse to civil life prepare for the worst by upping their efficiency through betraying the social contract that they have with their fellow citizens because those people are not going to be around much longer to chastise them, in any case, and after the civil collapse, people are going to need whatever resources they can get their hands on.
5. So civil society exists as long as a long-term (open-ended) social vision is maintained, but think about what social pessimism and End of Times eschatological thinking brings to this situation.
6. Hopefully now it is simple enough to understand what is going on in countries that embrace traditional Judic prophesies, or any community that predicts an unavoidable apocalypse. A race to the bottom ensues :/
7. So the scientific truth is very important - prophesised supernatural apocalypses are apparently the result of insanity, and that insanity becomes translated into the economics - the integrity of the circulation system - of a society.

I got all that from Dawkins and Axelrod.


I am not understanding? On the one hand, the information seems simple enough, but anyone who understands it, sees the insanity and our survival depends on counteracting the insanity. So why doesn't the situation right itself?

I think the problem is we have not carefully identified the problems and we are not discussing the reality we face and we are not working together to resolve the problems. We live on a finite planet and insist on behaving as though it were infinite. This is totally insane! Once again, I think the opinion of our intelligence is highly overrated.

Hum, intelligence? What is it? It is not tangible, is it? Yet we operate in pools of intelligence. If people are prepared to think only about tangible reality and are biased against intangible reality, might they lack important information?

It is not enough to say there is a problem. It must also be said there is a solution to the problem. We have not had adequately discussed the problems and solutions. I am sorry but I am really pissed about the ignorance and the economic and political factors that have brought us to the mess we are in. I disagree with Dawkins because a democracy demands a well-informed mass and we have not taken the steps necessary to have a well-informed mass. We can not judge how a well-informed mass would behave. We can only judge what ignorant people have done.

In the 1920's a newspaper printed a small article on a back page saying, "Given our known oil supply and rate consumption we are headed for economic disaster and possibly war." We have had damn near 100 years to resolve the problem and the mass education and mass communication to so, and yet the masses have remained unaware the problem and all the problems spinning off of the problem of all industrial economies being dependent on a finite resource. We remain on the path to economic disaster and war.

Before the end of the second world war, it was Britain spread around the world, not the US. Following the war, the US stepped in where Britain pulled out. Before this, the world saw the US as the liberator not a threat to their independence. Who today remembers we had a very weak military at the beginning of the second world war, and no nation saw the US as a threat? Oh, but now we must defend ourselves from the Muslims who are threatening us just because they are jealous of us. Huh, how did this happen? "Given our known oil supplies and rate consumption we are headed for economic disaster and possibly war."
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 8th, 2017, 2:03 pm 

Paul Anthony » April 5th, 2017, 10:37 am wrote:Athena, Those are all good questions, The answers would require many separate threads.

Geopolitics is a multi-faceted issue. While education is key to understanding it all, education (or it's lack) doesn't explain it all. Economics alone is a subject beyond the comprehension of the vast majority, and for those few who have knowledge of the subject, there is disagreement. If the average person understood what the Federal Reserve's goal of 2% annual inflation means to him - a reduction in the value of the dollars in his pocket - people would be outraged. Since the creation of the Fed, the US dollar has lost 97% of it's purchasing power.


For sure our discussions of economics is horribly lacking! What can we do about that? There are caring and intelligent people here and perhaps declaring a section for economic discussion would plant a seed that can grow?

And yet, as important as I believe economics is, those who claim to be economists cannot solve all of the world's problems. A stronger economy in one nation detrimentally affects other nations in a world where all nations trade with one another. There will always be winners and losers. The losers resort to behavior (like war) that affects the rest of the world. And war makes some nations winners, no matter who wins or who loses the war. The US is the largest armament dealer in the world, followed by the UK. Russia is third. Sadly, war is good for some economies.


War was not good for our economy until we established the Military Industrial Complex. Perhaps this fact of life should go in an economics forum? Perhaps we need to get these discussions out of moral/feeling field and into the reality field. It could be argued Rome fell economically before the barbarians devoured it, and it has been said this was because it taxed its people too much to pay for the military that was spread further and further away from Rome. The spread of Rome followed the hunger for mineral resources and especially gold.
This is what shifted the power of Rome from Rome to Constantinople. Again and again, civilizations were born and they have fallen, and a better understanding of this seems very important to being self-governing.

If everyone understood the ramifications of economics there would be civil unrest. I'm all for transparency, but sometimes that could make things worse.


Ah, is it reasonable to believe the whole world can enjoy our standard or living? Is our standard of living sustainable? Must we have this standard of living to be happy? Are we more intelligent than other animals? If so we better start asking the questions and dealing with reality.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 8th, 2017, 2:37 pm 

wolfhnd » November 19th, 2016, 10:36 pm wrote:
AnthropologistsBiologists? Psychologists? Historians? Surely they've added to our knowledge about societies, how they work and why they don't. Even philosophers, writers and artists have contributed.


Yes I agree but more in an interpretative sense. In a smaller society first hand experience may be sufficient to make general assessments but in a complex society some simplification by demographically data is useful.

More important I meant to focus on the epistemological issue of facts which I equated with data and truth than how facts are derived. For example the fact that we live in a indeterminate universe at tiny scales does nothing to alter the truth that cause and effect determinism remains the best way to understand that universe.

Truth for me is part of our individual philosophical reference. Facts are those bits of data that we can tentative and conditionally agree on to have a dialogue. How we arrange and prioritize those facts into a cohesive non contradictory philosophy is our truth. That is not to say that the correspondence concept of truth is wrong only that we are working within our individual limitations. As Richard Feynman says "We never are definitely right, we can only be sure we are wrong."


I like this post because it can help us understand our communication challenge. Aristotle said we are political animals, but what Dawkins said seems to oppose that notion, focusing on our limited self-awareness rather than our political nature. We can not apply our intelligence to a problem if it is not correctly identified and we can meet the communication challenges.

What things do self-governing people need to know? How about what resources have to do with economics and what resources and economics have to do with international relationships. Are we better defended if we ignore the health of our citizens and pour our resources into military spending? Do short-term economic goals justify long-term environmental degradation? Give me the math and science. Not chatter about the liberals and conservatives.

I suspect our biggest problem has been we let others control the conversation, and self-governing people need to take back the control of the conversation. Their education needs to prepare them for this as it before education for technology, and specializing everyone to fit in their place in the Borg. Shifting authority and power from the individual to the Borg.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby wolfhnd on April 8th, 2017, 5:34 pm 

Athena » Sat Apr 08, 2017 6:37 pm wrote:
wolfhnd » November 19th, 2016, 10:36 pm wrote:
AnthropologistsBiologists? Psychologists? Historians? Surely they've added to our knowledge about societies, how they work and why they don't. Even philosophers, writers and artists have contributed.


Yes I agree but more in an interpretative sense. In a smaller society first hand experience may be sufficient to make general assessments but in a complex society some simplification by demographically data is useful.

More important I meant to focus on the epistemological issue of facts which I equated with data and truth than how facts are derived. For example the fact that we live in a indeterminate universe at tiny scales does nothing to alter the truth that cause and effect determinism remains the best way to understand that universe.

Truth for me is part of our individual philosophical reference. Facts are those bits of data that we can tentative and conditionally agree on to have a dialogue. How we arrange and prioritize those facts into a cohesive non contradictory philosophy is our truth. That is not to say that the correspondence concept of truth is wrong only that we are working within our individual limitations. As Richard Feynman says "We never are definitely right, we can only be sure we are wrong."


I like this post because it can help us understand our communication challenge. Aristotle said we are political animals, but what Dawkins said seems to oppose that notion, focusing on our limited self-awareness rather than our political nature. We can not apply our intelligence to a problem if it is not correctly identified and we can meet the communication challenges.

What things do self-governing people need to know? How about what resources have to do with economics and what resources and economics have to do with international relationships. Are we better defended if we ignore the health of our citizens and pour our resources into military spending? Do short-term economic goals justify long-term environmental degradation? Give me the math and science. Not chatter about the liberals and conservatives.

I suspect our biggest problem has been we let others control the conversation, and self-governing people need to take back the control of the conversation. Their education needs to prepare them for this as it before education for technology, and specializing everyone to fit in their place in the Borg. Shifting authority and power from the individual to the Borg.


There seems to be a growing consensus that agrees with you. Freedom of speech is an issue that both liberal and conservative intellectuals our publicly promoting while the media seems obsessed with fake news. It kind of insults the intelligence of the general population to suggest they are unable to determine what is fake news which is the unavoidable consequence of free speech. It would be better if the media educated the public about alternative media than just promoting their corporate interests.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby BadgerJelly on April 9th, 2017, 4:34 am 

"News" is created to feed a need. It is also used to serve ideals of society and/or individuals.

People are stupid and some are more stupiderer than others. Then the others make use of this as they see fitting to the current individual/social ethical climate.

I only really care about freedom if I don't possess it.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on April 9th, 2017, 5:40 am 

Athena » April 9th, 2017, 2:24 am wrote: I disagree with Dawkins because a democracy demands a well-informed mass and we have not taken the steps necessary to have a well-informed mass. We can not judge how a well-informed mass would behave. We can only judge what ignorant people have done.

Dawkins recognises this situation - that's why he talks about memes; how our ability to model our economic environment - the fundamental truth - becomes hijacked by the 'magic' of symbol manipulation to the point that the true economic territory becomes completely replaced by dislocated symbols. Baudrillard called this the 'hyper-reality' - a world where a person consumes the golden photo of the hamburger rather than the sorry mess one gets handed in the fast food store, or where someone makes love to a sex symbol in their minds eye, rather than the person they are making a baby with.

The key issue is, then, as Marx said, the imaginary symbolic domain sedating the masses, while their economic entitlements are removed from right under their noses. And just like drug or gambling addicts who are 'enjoying themselves too much', that is their choice - they are hooked, and one could say that that is their path, even though from outside we can see that things could be different. But they've got to die some day, just like everyone has to, and they wouldn't continue if it wasn't making them happy, no matter the length of their necessarily limited life.

The only way to help them is to offer something better - what is better than an imaginery heaven, though? - Well, a real heaven. And so there's plenty of work to be done if you care that much ;P
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 12th, 2017, 2:02 pm 

wolfhnd » April 8th, 2017, 3:34 pm wrote:
There seems to be a growing consensus that agrees with you. Freedom of speech is an issue that both liberal and conservative intellectuals our publicly promoting while the media seems obsessed with fake news. It kind of insults the intelligence of the general population to suggest they are unable to determine what is fake news which is the unavoidable consequence of free speech. It would be better if the media educated the public about alternative media than just promoting their corporate interests.


Things are not that simple. You are expecting media people know what they do not know. I speak from the experience of trying to call media attention to the problem of homelessness and also the problems we face because oil is finite and tied to all economies and modern day wars. These issues are related.

Because the paper printed a letter I wrote about the 1920 warning that we are headed for economic disaster and war, a geologist got in touch with me and gave me his books. The media ignored him when he told them of his first published book. His second book got special awards, so I was able to get the newspaper to attention to what he was saying, and our local newspaper was the first to announce we really do have an oil supply problem. That was before fracking.

If fracking came before the OPEC embargo on US oil, there would have no recession in 1970, Reagan would have had a very weak reason to slash domestic budgets and pour money into military spending, escalating our involvement in the mid east, and also the potential for war in the mid-east, and our national debt. Please understand, a journalist studies how to write a good story, and the notion of newsworthy is very limited to what is happening at the moment, and like many people think, limited to one topic. They are not all the scientist, economist, and nor experts on international, and they do not investigate the issues that are involved in the mess we have gotten ourselves into. I had to turn myself into freak acting out with other homeless folks to call attention to problems that were ignored, and we still don't have a good understanding of any of the issues.

All of us are lagging in a much simpler past. Our consciousness has not kept pace with the rapidly changing world we are in. We do not demand a much better-informed media, and we are not doing a good job of getting ourselves informed. It was pure luck that I found the 1920 newspaper article, that alerted me to the what oil had to do with the 1970 recession and all the insanity that followed. We need to stop throwing stones and figure out how we can do better. Forums such as this one could be one of the most important forces in today's reality, but this would mean updating the management of the forum with awareness of the potential we have here.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on April 13th, 2017, 11:22 pm 

This seems to be a case of 'what goes around, comes around':

Assad says Syria chemical attack that killed dozens is 'fabrication'
The Guardian, 13 April 2017
Images from Khan Sheikhun of victims convulsing and foaming at the mouth caused widespread international outrage. Trump cited the suffering of dozens of children who were among the dead and injured as one of the main reasons he dropped his long-standing opposition military action against Assad.

But the Syrian leader questioned whether the videos were real, insisting it was “not clear whether it happened or not, because how can you verify a video? You have a lot of fake videos now”.

He said: “We don’t know whether those dead children were killed in Khan Sheikhun. Were they dead at all? Who committed the attack if there was an attack?”

Maybe this post-truthism all started with the Iraq 45 minute deployable WMD claim that was shown to be untrue...?
That was a significant factor reported by the media, just like these nerve agent reports are, which in turn have resulted in military action.
We have been shown that we cannot trust our own Western governments to report the important truth regarding foreign military potential and the presence of certain weapons in the Middle East.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, the global monitor of the banned arms, has begun an investigation into the attack.

But Russia blocked a UN security council resolution demanding Syria cooperate with the inquiry on Wednesday and Assad said he would not work with investigators he considered to be politicised.

Syria could “only allow any investigation when it’s impartial, when we make sure that unbiased countries will participate in this delegation in order to make sure that they won’t use it for politicised purposes”, he told AFP.


A team from the UN and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) accused the Syrian government of using chlorine gas in two attacks and Isis fighters of using mustard gas in one, during 2014 and 2015.

Are such UN teams now the only trustworthy 'guardians of the truth' in these matters? Or are they really potentially so biased that even they cannot be trusted?
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 14th, 2017, 10:25 am 

Mossling » April 13th, 2017, 9:22 pm wrote:This seems to be a case of 'what goes around, comes around':

Assad says Syria chemical attack that killed dozens is 'fabrication'
The Guardian, 13 April 2017
Images from Khan Sheikhun of victims convulsing and foaming at the mouth caused widespread international outrage. Trump cited the suffering of dozens of children who were among the dead and injured as one of the main reasons he dropped his long-standing opposition military action against Assad.

But the Syrian leader questioned whether the videos were real, insisting it was “not clear whether it happened or not, because how can you verify a video? You have a lot of fake videos now”.

He said: “We don’t know whether those dead children were killed in Khan Sheikhun. Were they dead at all? Who committed the attack if there was an attack?”

Maybe this post-truthism all started with the Iraq 45 minute deployable WMD claim that was shown to be untrue...?
That was a significant factor reported by the media, just like these nerve agent reports are, which in turn have resulted in military action.
We have been shown that we cannot trust our own Western governments to report the important truth regarding foreign military potential and the presence of certain weapons in the Middle East.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, the global monitor of the banned arms, has begun an investigation into the attack.

But Russia blocked a UN security council resolution demanding Syria cooperate with the inquiry on Wednesday and Assad said he would not work with investigators he considered to be politicised.

Syria could “only allow any investigation when it’s impartial, when we make sure that unbiased countries will participate in this delegation in order to make sure that they won’t use it for politicised purposes”, he told AFP.


A team from the UN and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) accused the Syrian government of using chlorine gas in two attacks and Isis fighters of using mustard gas in one, during 2014 and 2015.

Are such UN teams now the only trustworthy 'guardians of the truth' in these matters? Or are they really potentially so biased that even they cannot be trusted?


I wish Cheney and Bush were put on trial for war crimes. That would be the only way to redeem ourselves and hopefully build trust. Not just trust with other countries but within the US. Very since Vietnam, we have been divided and the war with Iraq made things much worse!

Cheney and Bush seriously damaged our imagine around the world and these neo con's were so proud of themselves they had a website explaining their attempt to have military control of the mid-east, called the New Century American Project. I suspect the rapid military build of the Trump administration demonstrates the same people who gave us the Iraq war are in charge, now that Obama isn't in office to prevent this.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Braininvat on April 14th, 2017, 10:32 am 

Assad looks so foolish now, given the massive amount of video and social media from eyewitnesses, and the chemical analysis that has already shown the gas to be the blend of sarin and chlorine that is Assad's signature. His rhetorical "how can you verify a video" is especially risible, in light of the obvious abundance of videos with time stamps off of multiple recording devices and from diverse sources. And his argument is also a clever distraction from the damning nature of eyewitness reports from thousands of individuals.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on April 14th, 2017, 7:26 pm 

Braininvat » April 14th, 2017, 11:32 pm wrote:Assad looks so foolish now, given the massive amount of video and social media from eyewitnesses, and the chemical analysis that has already shown the gas to be the blend of sarin and chlorine that is Assad's signature. His rhetorical "how can you verify a video" is especially risible, in light of the obvious abundance of videos with time stamps off of multiple recording devices and from diverse sources. And his argument is also a clever distraction from the damning nature of eyewitness reports from thousands of individuals.

If you compare these videos with, say, the videos people shot of the 9/11 attacks, in Syria one is lacking verifiable landmarks and the footage is seemingly limited. All I have seen is a few humans with breathing problems lying on the ground. There were supposed to be masses of people behaving in the same way. I've seen some graves with stones where the numerous casualties were said to have been buried, but apart from that not much else made it through to me in the mainstream media.

If, for 9/11, AlQaeda tried saying (for whatever reason) that the twin towers were an 'inside job', there was footage of planes and big holes in the side of the building, and then all the plane monitoring data and passenger lists, and so forth. That would have been difficult to 'spin', but here it seems entirely possible that what Assad is saying could be true, especially given USA's penchant for lying regarding Middle East potential - and especially now with a lying nepotistic anti-journalist would-be-dictator POTUS at the helm.

It seems that the situation in Syria or in the West is more about the rich and their power struggles with proper journalism (and no wonder, since the 1% grab more every year) and everything else is getting caught up in this wave of greedy media corruption - for example, the ability to conclude whether a war crime has taken place, and whether it was staged or truly intended by the main power.

When choosing between Assad or Trump for who is more corruptible - who is potentially colluding with Russia more, for me at present, it is really not that clear. For its obvious that neither of them give a fig about the journalistic Truth, and that they are all more concerned about their personal apparently ill-gotten fortunes.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Paul Anthony on April 14th, 2017, 8:24 pm 

Athena » Fri Apr 14, 2017 7:25 am wrote:
Cheney and Bush seriously damaged our imagine around the world and these neo con's were so proud of themselves they had a website explaining their attempt to have military control of the mid-east, called the New Century American Project. I suspect the rapid military build of the Trump administration demonstrates the same people who gave us the Iraq war are in charge, now that Obama isn't in office to prevent this.


I was never a fan of Bush or Cheney, and i really wish we would mind our own business. But to be fair, Bush invaded two countries. Obama got us involved in another three.

Trump said he wanted us to stay out of foreign wars, but here we are bombing in Syria and Afghanistan.

It really doesn't seem to matter who is President. The Deep State calls the shots. We should have listened to Eisenhower when he warned us about the military-industrial complex.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on April 14th, 2017, 9:54 pm 

It really doesn't seem to matter who is President. The Deep State calls the shots. We should have listened to Eisenhower when he warned us about the military-industrial complex.


Indeed. The 'special interests' who support the expensive campaigns and facilitate the post-election dividing-up of national resources - aka "the rich 1% who are getting richer every day".

It can't go on forever, though, can it - I mean, they own 50% (and probably more now) of the world's household wealth, how much do they have to own before the bubble bursts? And it will burst because there's no stopping someone who is addicted to the process of legally gaining more. Just like predators that over-exploit their prey, one will see that nature will have the last say; implosion - the sun begins to rise at the darkest point of the night; yang always flips into yin.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Lomax on April 14th, 2017, 11:13 pm 

Mossling » April 14th, 2017, 4:22 am wrote:This seems to be a case of 'what goes around, comes around':

Assad says Syria chemical attack that killed dozens is 'fabrication'
The Guardian, 13 April 2017
Images from Khan Sheikhun of victims convulsing and foaming at the mouth caused widespread international outrage. Trump cited the suffering of dozens of children who were among the dead and injured as one of the main reasons he dropped his long-standing opposition military action against Assad.

But the Syrian leader questioned whether the videos were real, insisting it was “not clear whether it happened or not, because how can you verify a video? You have a lot of fake videos now”.

He said: “We don’t know whether those dead children were killed in Khan Sheikhun. Were they dead at all? Who committed the attack if there was an attack?”

Maybe this post-truthism all started with the Iraq 45 minute deployable WMD claim that was shown to be untrue...?
That was a significant factor reported by the media, just like these nerve agent reports are, which in turn have resulted in military action.
We have been shown that we cannot trust our own Western governments to report the important truth regarding foreign military potential and the presence of certain weapons in the Middle East.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, the global monitor of the banned arms, has begun an investigation into the attack.

But Russia blocked a UN security council resolution demanding Syria cooperate with the inquiry on Wednesday and Assad said he would not work with investigators he considered to be politicised.

Syria could “only allow any investigation when it’s impartial, when we make sure that unbiased countries will participate in this delegation in order to make sure that they won’t use it for politicised purposes”, he told AFP.


A team from the UN and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) accused the Syrian government of using chlorine gas in two attacks and Isis fighters of using mustard gas in one, during 2014 and 2015.

Are such UN teams now the only trustworthy 'guardians of the truth' in these matters? Or are they really potentially so biased that even they cannot be trusted?

The idea of "post-truth" isn't merely that politicians lie - if it were, how could you claim it began with the 2003 invasion? - but that the masses don't care anymore. I think the WMD thing is a bad example of this; there has been a continual supply of outrage about that probable lie ever since.

We are not purely limited to the word of the UN: Médecins Sans Frontières, for example, have affirmed the chlorine/sarin point.

I am curious as to why people who are willing to entertain Assad's side of this story never call into doubt, for example, the idea that the US fired 59 Tomahawks at Assad's base. All we have are videos and text on that, too. Why is it that evidence is only questionable when it doesn't confirm your preconceptions? This is not how to do skepticism.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Mossling on April 15th, 2017, 12:14 am 

Lomax » April 15th, 2017, 12:13 pm wrote:I am curious as to why people who are willing to entertain Assad's side of this story never call into doubt, for example, the idea that the US fired 59 Tomahawks at Assad's base. All we have are videos and text on that, too. Why is it that evidence is only questionable when it doesn't confirm your preconceptions? This is not how to do skepticism.

I think the journalists who entertained Assad's side of the story had all the opportunity to provide counter-evidence that was necessary to undermine it. I, for one, was hoping that it would be thoroughly undermined - ideally by a team from the UN and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. Unfortunately that has not happened yet, but it sounds like you are suggesting that only Trump's view, or 'the West's' ("deep state", military industrial special interests, and all) should be entertained in all of this?

Since when has the USA launched a fake military attack? How and why would that benefit them? I saw in MSM the rockets going up from the ship, the aerial shots of the damaged base, with diagrams and maps. That presented a lot more detail that could be analysed than what I saw from the Syrian gas attack side.

And regarding assuming someone has preconceptions that need to be confirmed, I would reposte, my dear fellow, Lomax, that that is also not how to do skepticism.

My allegance in all of this is, as is usual, with the Socratic Truth, as I have mentioned on this forum many times recently. Please 'try' me on that in future.

Best wishes.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Lomax on April 15th, 2017, 11:28 am 

Mossling » April 15th, 2017, 5:14 am wrote:I think the journalists who entertained Assad's side of the story had all the opportunity to provide counter-evidence that was necessary to undermine it. I, for one, was hoping that it would be thoroughly undermined - ideally by a team from the UN and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. Unfortunately that has not happened yet, but it sounds like you are suggesting that only Trump's view, or 'the West's' ("deep state", military industrial special interests, and all) should be entertained in all of this?

I'm actually not particularly willing to entertain Assad or Trump. I do think the UN (for all their uselessness) have a better record of integrity. And organisations like Doctors Without Borders are good sources in my estimation. We also have the evidence against interest point - journalists like Robert Fisk, who by no means bang the drum for Western Intervention, report their own convictions, based on the many witnesses they meet, that Assad dunnit.

Mossling » April 15th, 2017, 5:14 am wrote:Since when has the USA launched a fake military attack? How and why would that benefit them? I saw in MSM the rockets going up from the ship, the aerial shots of the damaged base, with diagrams and maps. That presented a lot more detail that could be analysed than what I saw from the Syrian gas attack side.

But it was still only videos and text, wasn't it? Assad's argument rests on the point that videos can be faked. Well I think his argument shall have to be a little more refined than that.

I have never once heard anybody of the antiwar movement call into doubt the possibility that America performed any kind of military operation. Such claims are always taken as given. While dictators and sometimes even terrorists are given the benefit of the doubt. This is my concern.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Athena on April 16th, 2017, 1:42 pm 

Mossling » April 6th, 2017, 4:43 am wrote:
Athena » April 6th, 2017, 12:40 am wrote:Mossling, I am not sure I agree with everything you said, but I am frustrated by the mass's failure to demand important information

Well what's your answer to that failure then?

We must keep the uncontrolled population growth around the world healthy and happy, right?

Is there really a "we"? There are currently the truthists and then the worker/consumers, it seems. And the worker/consumers have just won the most recent US election. They only listen to the language of consumption, which is most often made possible by a job. So if you 'talk' jobs and consumption - the more luxurious the better, then you win their ears. And perhaps they will only begin to think about healthy consumption habits when their bodies or minds are too sick to work, or their environment is completely polluted or inhospitable; the standard "if it ain't broke, why change it?" conservative mentality.


If we understood what Jefferson meant by the pursuit of happiness, what you said in the last paragraph would not be a problem. We have always had a serious education problem because we Americanized the past wisdom upon which our democracy was built and lost knowledge of the importance of past philosophy. The result is destroying our democracy and possible a world war lead by men who understand playing power games, but lack wisdom, and who are elected by citizens who lack the education to make better choices.

We pride ourselves in being scientific but we are not. We are not born logical. Logic is something we must learn. Being superstitious comes to us naturally. For example doing useless rituals to get desired results comes to us naturally. Even one of the best mathematicians that the world has known was a very superstitious man. He thought a goddess gave him his mathematical powers and that he must not eat certain foods for doing so would anger the gods and result in him being punished by them. His beliefs worked very well for him in solving mathematical mysteries, but when he went to Britain where he could not get the food he needed so easily and by mistake, he ate Ovaltine, his beliefs became a death sentence.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srinivasa_Ramanujan
Srinivasa Iyengar Ramanujan FRS (pronunciation: Listeni/ˈʃriːniˌvɑːsə ˈrɑːmɑːˌnʊdʒən/; 22 December 1887 – 26 April 1920) was an Indian mathematician and autodidact who lived during the British Raj. Though he had almost no formal training in pure mathematics, he made substantial contributions to mathematical analysis, number theory, infinite series, and continued fractions. Ramanujan initially developed his own mathematical research in isolation; it was quickly recognized by Indian mathematicians. When his skills became obvious and known to the wider mathematical community, centred in Europe at the time, he began a partnership with the English mathematician G. H. Hardy. The Cambridge professor realized that Srinivasa Ramanujan had produced new theorems in addition to rediscovering previously known ones.



The point is we can be highly intelligent and still think wearing a lucky shirt, or carrying a rabbit's foot, or practicing a useless ritual, will increase our chances of getting desired results. Every time we do such useless things and get desired results, it reinforces our belief that it works. We have to go beyond experimenting to asking "If this works, why does it work?". Philosophy and science are about asking the next question and we have to learn how to do this. This is no longer the priority of public education. Education for technology is not learning how to think. Education for technology is mostly memorizing and processing information. Education for technology is very detrimental to the thinking process the is required by democracy. Please, note I am saying education for independent thinking is essential and that is not what education for technology is. I am not against technology, but believe education for independent is essential.

We have become followers instead of leaders, and this time we chose a very bad leader. We could be in serious trouble, not simply because we could be headed for economic and environmental disaster and possible war, but because so many people think the biggest bully on the block is the best choice for a leader. We have had education for this, education for the "worker/consumers" since 1958, and know cares enough about education for children, to investigate for themselves what I am saying. The Military Industrial Complex requires followers. The democracy we had required leaders.
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Re: 'Post-Truth Politics' - Collapse in Information Integrit

Postby Paul Anthony on April 16th, 2017, 2:04 pm 

Athena » Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:42 am wrote:

We pride ourselves in being scientific but we are not. We are not born logical. Logic is something we must learn. Being superstitious comes to us naturally. For example doing useless rituals to get desired results comes to us naturally...

We have become followers instead of leaders, and this time we chose a very bad leader. We could be in serious trouble, not simply because we could be headed for economic and environmental disaster and possible war, but because so many people think the biggest bully on the block is the best choice for a leader. We have had education for this, education for the "worker/consumers" since 1958, and know cares enough about education for children, to investigate for themselves what I am saying. The Military Industrial Complex requires followers. The democracy we had required leaders.


I agree with the essence of your message, but take exception to your inference that supporters of Trump are followers but those who support Democrats are not. Both parties rely on followers - people who parrot what they are told without thinking too much about it. "Social Justice", "Living wage", "Women's health", "Save the planet" are cute catch-phrases that few can actually define. They are just as useful and as inane as "Make America great again".
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