Monday, February 5, 2024

Do we have a problem here?

 Sitting at the laptop at 5 AM!

Captain, do we have a problem here? 

(... Sometimes you need to just get up, and get back at it! Perhaps a little slow, only two years later)

  And so begins my morning.

There is no outline to follow, this at best, will be a rambling of thoughts.

Perhaps to set the tone for this, I will go back to January 4 of 2022. An idea! The title!

The reoccurring thought, "are we capable of saving ourselves from ourselves?"

Are we capable? Yes, but… Why the "but"?

Because I'm going to say what nobody wants to hear. We are capable, but we probably will not. A sad state of existence, the repetition of history. Cycles that never and. Perhaps best showed and brought to light by Plato. From Plato's Republic, "the allegory of the cave".

Without a higher academic background, I simply didn't know any better. I stumbled across this while scrolling YouTube videos with an interest in philosophy. I watched a particular video more than once, and I've shared the link to others many times.

Plato's writings brought into focus many observations over a lifetime. Without the proper terms to describe, I simply remember patterns of behavior. It has been nearly a decade, and things fall into place. There are overlaps, there are alignments, and there are close but not quite. If this sounds like an obscure riddle, I will continue to ramble on. I hope it creates a picture in your mind. To quote someone that I met a decade ago, he said: "I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you."

We have an illusion, or should I say delusion. Every one of us has the opinion that we are, in our moment of reality, the epitome of our species. It is simply called EGO. Communities and social groups exist everywhere, and within each, they establish pecking orders of authority and autonomy. A simple quote many times repeated, "people gravitate to their highest level of incompetence". Thus proceeded the Salem Witch Trials. We could create an endless list, the death camps of Nazi Germany. Within a recent recorded history, this perhaps tops the list as the worst.

Can we identify a pattern? Recorded history, predominantly from the conquerors, is the best evidence we have. But I'd like to suggest an underlying thread of continuity. Conquerors? Let's begin there. I have imagined a three-legged stool. Yes, it is stable. The stability is because of geometry. The best, the strongest. The number three. The triangle.

What do we have in common to establish this, Trinity? The first three that come to mind: colonialism, capitalism and Christianity. The common thread of exploitation throughout all continents in recent recorded history. Strong enough to obliterate everything that it touches. A proponent of democracy. Really? Can we suggest that the common thread in this Trinity, which emphasizes the utmost importance of democracy, is in fact a theocracy? And lies the problem. Within theocracy, there can be no democracy. It is authoritarian; it is absolute. Absolute authority rises to position, pushed by the majority. As with any pyramid, it is broader at the base. Therefore, the lowest levels of the social group form the dominant majority, and as a result, they create authority based on emotion. Logic and reasoning played no part in the Salem Witch Trials. Nazi Germany, before the second world war, the leader appeared on the cover of Time magazine. The best example of a socialist regime, "for the people by the people". Everything that followed was democratic and, therefore, declared a legal process.

Repeated pattern appears the leaders are a product of a social process to elevate the most charismatic ego to the highest position of authority. Through this social process, repeated many times, genocide simply becomes a legal process.

Yes, we have a substance problem. The pandemic, thousands of lives lost. The solution? Many are proponents of safe consumption sites. Yes, that would save many. But there is a broader view of our social situation. Perhaps the greatest addictive substance throughout human history has been alcohol. It's legal, we have safe consumption sites. Through the democratic process, people attain what they want.

It's legal, and there are safe consumption sites for alcohol. As a result, we have widespread dysfunction. Within organized sports, recently media brought forth "toxic masculinity". That's nothing new! Perhaps we could just describe it another way? The British would say: "stiff upper lip, my boy." From Victorian times, "the woman's place is in the home". One cornerstone of historical colonial power. A once great empire. How do we make such social control and power? Legalize the substance that facilitates the social cohesion by the obliteration of individual logic and reason. Can we not now view alcohol as a necessary instrument in the establishment of once great financial empires built on rum and slavery? Yes, we had sugar and spices, but rum and slavery were the major driving forces of the economy.

Recent experiences, observations. Here in the local community, a safe consumption site. Occasionally attending a Sunday afternoon music jam, however, the choice is that it doesn't happen often. Why? Sure I could socialize. Just as with the allegory of Plato's cave, here is a social group that would eventually destroy the outsider. "We don't like the way you think." It is simply a matter of time, that human behaviour repeated over and over and over in the social groups everywhere. Yes, a good place, a safe place. Yes, a safe place for toxic masculinity to remain deeply rooted in the community. Many would say this is an unfair assessment. Step back and look around, exposure in the media of toxic behaviours in organized sports. Fees collected used to pay off in silence people with settlements and nondisclosure agreements. During our many hours spent together over the past decade, an acquaintance stated: “over 80% of the women in this community have been victims of abuse.”

Over a lifetime, of a could write thousands and thousands of lines of similar stories to the above paragraph. In a broad context, we simply have social dysfunction, the root causation to be legal in every context. Repetitive cycles. In the past I've stumbled across a statement, "there are over 50 medical conditions in the aging population, a common correlation being alcohol."

Now perhaps, let's say that we had a community along a stream. The community realized they had a high percentage of their community with a common medical condition. Probable causation, correlation, could it be something in the water? To establish beyond a reasonable doubt that the common thread is the water source, the community would investigate upstream to find the source of the contaminant. Everyone would agree! It's logical, it's reasonable, it's rational. Find the source of the problem and fix it.

But we don't! We have the knowledge, we have the understanding; we have the correlation. The most destructive substance on the face of the planet for our species has been alcohol. Our current social and economic structures of the "Western way of life" depend on the revenue stream. The two most common legal substances, alcohol and tobacco, are the cornerstones of gambling, health and pharmaceutical, general consumerism. The substance cravings interrupt, or have completely replaced, reason and logic, thus to highjack individual's ability of "long-term" goals and planning.

Yes, there has been some measure of achievement. People have socially accepted and recognized "Mothers Against Drunk Driving", MADD. As a society, we simply refused to go upstream and find the source and put a stop to the carnage. The business of medicine and psychiatry will never put itself out of business, a revolving turnstile of never ending clients. A pandemic of dysfunction where we know the cause, but we are helpless to do anything about it. "The court of public opinion", maintains the legality of causation, regardless of the continued escalating financial costs, fighting fires of social dysfunction. Protect the institution's fine name, "suck it up", and drag it out through the courts for decades. Pay out millions, and established more nondisclosure agreements. Sweep it under the rug, and bury it.

From the time I finished high school, for many years, I tried to get my mother to quit smoking. It never happened! Her words: "it's the only thing I enjoy". Well, it wasn't the smoking. She enjoyed her daily living of being a little tipsy. Sometimes to the point of slurring her words, but usually just a consistent "happy state". It was because of the alcohol that her liver finally caused her demise. She could have easily had at least another 20 years. For both my parents, this was the only daily existence they have a knew.

So what after two years prompted a 5 AM start? Perhaps everything begins with a heightened state of emotion. As long as things are going smoothly, there is no reason to change anything. It's just continuing with the usual. Well, perhaps a week ago, there was a conversation that was simply tuned acceptance of into daily reality and existence. Shared circumstances, just the way it is. Shared emotion and understanding. A few days later, went to an event, the passing of an acquaintance, someone I knew almost nothing about. On the way, I thought dropping in and picking up a sympathy card for the family was the right thing to do. I found the most fitting card for the circumstance, but I walked around the display. Oh yes, those February 14 cards. It is that time of year, isn't it! Well, I had a weak moment, and it didn't take long to find a card that "hit the nail on the head"! All about silliness, laughter and joking. How fitting, I thought. Pick the card up, "this is perfect". To some degree of perfection, all emotions are under control. Not so fast! Made it two-thirds the way to the checkout, and stopped. We went back a few steps, stopped and turned around and proceeded to the checkout again. Will this isn't going well! Probably at the third moment of indecision, I returned and put the card back in the display. Now, many days later, I'm up at 5 AM pouring out some thoughts. I need to get up and write about this, but I need to embed it further down in the paragraphs. So I guess I'm just talking to myself, but others reading this may relate and understand. A couple of days of past and I realized the indecision returning the card to the display was the right thing to do. I realize now in another newer conversation, the person who triggered my emotion a week ago is not this person of today. And therefore, by returning the card to the display, I did the right thing. 

In all of us there are moments of reality, but predominantly moments of a perceived reality. Today's society perhaps requires that we all wear masks to protect our true selves from the toxicity and dysfunction so commonplace around us.

"Can we save ourselves from ourselves"? But some would say, why would we want to? What is the point?

To be continued.

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

I Wonder?


Photo by Simon Wilkes on Unsplash

I’m sure you’ve heard the stories of an animal brought up in the farmyard. It associates itself as one of another species. On another note, you bring home a new pet, and the house training begins. Soon your new pet fits into your home environment. We condition it to what is expected. It established early cognitive development in many creatures in those first months. Personal identity and association with the group are established. In our species, those early developments establish cultural normals.

This brings into view a question. There are some in our society capable of viewing the world around them from the third person. It appears many are incapable of seeing the natural world outside of their identity. Incapable to view circumstance, and evaluate observations, and decide about the whole of the natural world. Many see an only immediate personal benefit.

I wonder? Is there a connection, is it possible, that during early development, limitations are created? Is it possible that in the general population, many are simply incapable of viewing the world outside of their individuality? Consider for a moment that the decision-making capability of each of us as concentric circles. The more circles there are, the higher your level of decision. As we go further out from the centre of these concentric circles, we pass a point where, at the next levels, a person can see themselves from the third person. Similar to IQ tests, we are all individuals with unique capabilities. Just as there are no two snowflakes are alike, there are no two individuals that are alike in their cognitive processes.

This being observed, I wonder? Is early development in our species responsible for the numbers of concentric circles that represent cognitive ability? Keep in mind that some can expand their knowledge and understanding, creating more concentric circles throughout their entire lifetime. This represents neuroplasticity. There appear to be many, that regardless of circumstance, would have a threshold of concentric circles. Cognitive ability that would never develop further because of the individual biological limitations. The working model in social groups that appears to work? Early training/indoctrination creates conformity. The conformity, thus, precipitates amiable interactions with the rest of the social group. Early implementation of team sports, I observe, is one of the best examples of conformity. Young individuals have their ego stroked by sports achievements. This establishes the reward and punishment cycles in the mind. I use this as an example because team sports were never part of my early upbringing. I wonder? Is this why? To view the world in the third person is my predominant way of evaluation and decision-making? In team sports, the team captain directed their decisions and activities. This establishes the authoritative patterns in individuals. From an even earlier age, the child in a religious family authority is recognized. It is understood before the establishment of language; the child understands the parents are directed by a higher authority. The early developmental mind wants to be part of, be rewarded, and be acknowledged. It would then follow that to mimic behaviours that are observed leads to the ego being stroked for observed conformity. I would suggest that all of this early development causes the young developing mind to be less and less capable of thinking in the third person. By that, I mean perceiving consequences of decisions and actions far beyond self for their immediate social group.

This brings to mind a grey area. This area of transition from viewing yourself from the first person to the third person. I would suggest that this capability of transition from the first person, full-frontal ego view, to the third person view of self, is comprised by a blend of concentric circles. That means that it is not an immediate transition of black-and-white. Why do I say this? Because depending on the topic or decision to be made, the ability to perceive consequence in the third person depends on perceiving a loss of identity or social status. If the individual immediately has the comprehension that their identity is in question, they would resist a view from the third person. If their view is that they have very little personal compromise and that the change in perspective is predominantly concerning others, then they may accept. However, that being said, if they perceive that changing their point of view because of seeing circumstance from the third person, will have social consequences by their immediate peer or social group, then they will resist. Because socially, this will affect their social status within the group. This maintains the social conformity of the group, its peer pressure. In extreme examples, this will lead to hostility. Such an outburst of extreme anger can take the form of the following “I don’t f*ckn like the way you think!” I have experienced have been subjected to these outbursts. After an extensive conversation, carefully presenting details and consequences. After agreement along the way in small incremental steps, when the individual realizes that they have been led to a requirement of change perspective, the outburst occurs. They find that their cognitive dissonance is brought into unobstructed view. They have found themselves painted into a corner. Their justification for the previous point of view has been carefully revealed to them. It is for this simple example that people of religious conviction cannot be reasoned with. Logic is not part of their vocabulary for this current topic.

In conclusion, I wonder if the establishment of social conformity in many of our societies truncates the natural development of the mind.

Sunday, February 12, 2023

Significance of today, Charles Darwin's birthday!

The significance of today, Charles Darwin's birthday!

Days are flowing into weeks, weeks are flowing into months, and I have not been expressing myself. My withdrawal? Yes perhaps. However observations lead me to a conclusion that perhaps my time is better spent just enjoying the moment, and saying nothing. Why? Because I've noticed over the past few months the common pattern of many interactions.

The common pattern being that under today's stressful times, people have retracted to their own personal levels of comfort and understanding. Perhaps to be better stated, that a society under stress retreats into their individual cocoons. It doesn't matter what's true, they're not interested in pursuing new knowledge and information, they just want to get through another day. This is perhaps no more prevalent, than in today’s seniors lives. The baby boomers? Yes, I think so. Each to their own striving to live through another day, without the confrontation of things beyond their understanding. Their understanding derived over their lifetime faced with what they do not know. Feeling lost and excluded by things beyond their reach and grasp. As time moves on, attention spans shorten, memories fade. The childhood state of mind to pursue the unknown, no matter how long it takes, just to know more, is a threatening experience. A common response, "why do I need to know that".

I thought about a recent interaction meant the days afterwards. After many random express thoughts of what I have observed and concluded over my lifetime, the person responded with the following. "Howard, why do you hate Christianity so much?" Wow! A person, perhaps in their midlife crisis, with deeply embedded hereditary concepts. Perhaps more broadly, a network, or a social structure, deeply rooted in hereditary "faith" concepts.

This aforementioned interaction is just one among. Many recalled interactions, therefore resulted in me pausing of my self-expression and writing. Giving myself a break. By the end of this coming March it will be eight years of my van life, and by the end of June 6 years of payments on my van will end. The need to push forward and do more, to always be busy, to always be thinking; maybe I can take a break from all of this? So perhaps as an excuse, this is what I have done. By the end of August, I will have completed my 75th year of existence on this planet. Survival skills gained over a lifetime have served me well. The childlike inquisitive nature to pursue the unknown, regardless of where-it-takes-you. This is probably the greatest asset and achievement.

I continue to enjoy my moments of observing people. It was once reserved for understanding complex electromechanical devices. That mental dexterity today applied to observing and analysing social structures around me. Perhaps on Darwin's birthday is a time to have just a little verbal diarrhea and ramble on. Even if I'm just talking to myself and nobody reads this, I guess I am enjoying my moment by expressing my observations.

Going back to that recent statement that was responded, "Howard, why do you hate Christianity so much?" I shook my head, almost laughing. It was a moment of realization that what I had perceived as a rational and logical individual was deeply steeped in the hereditary concept of reality. It was as though lightning struck. Perhaps best described by one meme found on the Internet. Thomas Paine, contributor to the writing of the US Constitution, and skeptic: "Attempting logic and reason with a person of faith is like administering medicine to the dead." It was my awestruck moment that everything that I said, either now or in previous conversations, was skewed by a faith-based perception of reality. People only understand what they hear, because of their knowledge and understanding. To the extreme of this, those that have attended weekly congregational meetings, and are absolutely certain that the teachings administered are of absolute authority, it then becomes clear. Weekly reinforcement of a sermon on "the doubting Thomas". How many times has the middle-aged individual heard this? Too many times to count. It is said that a concept need only be repeated as little as three times for it to be perceived as a foundational truth. Within much of our faith-based societies, they are helplessly tethered to their hereditary cultural past. As soon their mind perceives an idea or thought which discredits their lifelong adherence to their hereditary reality perception, the imaginary barrier goes up, and they only hear it from the faith biased perspective. The slightest hint that Christianity is not perfect is reason enough to have disregarded everything that has been expressed by an individual. The hereditary faith-based person simply sees the source as "evil". It must be evil, if it doesn't support a faith-based understanding, then it is the work of the devil.

And so it goes, too many similar stories to tell. Perhaps later this summer I will be recharged, find the energy, and begin again. Perhaps begin again, more critical and observant of those around me than before. Simple questions, and observance of behaviours, simply intending to walk away from any further interaction. Determine early If is a fundamental inquisitive nature exists? Has this person pursued new knowledge, or are they in their social network cocoon? Happy and easy-going, can be an indicator of both the inquisitive mind, and the closed mind. Carefully worded inquiries, short and concise can quickly determine the foundation of their daily existence. At age 75, perhaps the best learned lesson, is to analyze and determine the perspective of others, and therefore simply cut short the time spent. New knowledge, new understanding, appear to be always trumped by an assumed position of authority and knowledge when the following statement can be provoked as a response. "Everything happens for a reason." The sooner you arrive at the point, where this is a common response, the sooner you realize that new knowledge is simply administering medicine to the dead. Logic and reason, and an inquisitive nature, is the very root of our species. However, to be naturally inquisitive; has long been truncated.

I could go on, but perhaps this rambling will make sense to a few. Far better to be followed by those "on the road less travelled", than the deniers of the observable understandings; a result of their hereditary faith inclination.

Saturday, January 7, 2023

Our Species Cognitive Blind Spot


As a species, we have a blind spot.

Throughout the history of our species, we continue to observe that there has developed a careful process and procedure of agricultural methods. Development of better or hybrid plant or animal species for more successful agricultural pursuits. Careful and detailed records of intergenerational data. The development of higher education disciplines specifically for pursuing more sophisticated data collection, and therefore shaping future goals species modification.

The blind spot I describe is that despite process and procedure, we abdicate the application to our own species. Instead, we throw caution to the wind, and allow social, ethnic and cultural hereditary biases to be the selective process of precipitating outcomes and circumstances. These outcomes and circumstances become the attributes or deficits to be carried forward in all future generations.

Why don't we do better, when we already know better, and could do so?

Perhaps our species could be described somewhat as "species of jellyfish with extreme emotion and acute anxiety." Agricultural practices have already firmly established that, without the insertion of new genetic material into an agricultural practice, yield will decline. Planting the same seed year after year is simply inbreeding. Yields are reduced and susceptibility to disease and pests. This branch continues a path of genetic decline, probably ending in extinction. Agriculture has established standard practices with which to eliminate this, no one outcome. For the planting of crops, new seed is regularly purchased in order to maintain yield expectations. The same concept applies to livestock. It is further applied to sophisticated breeding practices for designer pets or support animals. Great care is taken to develop the canine species to be more efficient in law enforcement and the security industry, whether private or state run border control agencies.

Are there any plausible conclusions?

Reflecting over the past five centuries, ethnic groups established new beginnings on other continents. The most dominant example would be the North American continent. The establishment of geographical areas, each having the ethnic and cultural majority from their past.

Taking a snapshot from our current time, a democratic majority of populism, then stepping back to examine how this came to be.

Beyond doubt, we know from centuries of agricultural practices that genetic diversity is beneficial. General attributes can be maintained, both physical and mental, for sustainability. Therefore, reflect over the past 50 years. Perhaps a starting point at the end of the second world war. From that point to now, we have general economic prosperity and growth. What are the factors which precipitated this? The North American free enterprise system engaged in unprecedented growth in manufacturing. The supplier of consumer goods on a global scale filling the void created by the defeated countries during the war. Perhaps a smugness, and entitlement and social pride of being on the right side of history, because we won the war. Thus began ideological movements, the Christian evangelical movement by such people as Billy Graham. Throughout North America, agricultural communities openly and fully embraced the travelling roadshow. Social inward examinations within communities, the involvement of ethnic purities, perceived certainty of white supremacy. The early beginnings of white Christian white supremacist organizations. The establishment of ethnic discrimination processes of immigration.

If we compare agricultural practices to our own social practices, it becomes apparent there is a denial of future generational consequences of our social behaviors. When we do not plan for a sustainable future, we are on the default path of gradual decline. Future generations are of depreciated attributes by our current populism to take responsibility and action. Only in some narrow fields, hereditary diseases are screened for and procedure is in place to deal with next-generation disabilities. In the general population, we have arrived at a place when academic standing, general cognitive ability, as acceptable as long as the individual is perceived fit into their social community. It's the consensus that we are encouraged to "find our tribe". Therefore, drift through life searching for a place to belong. Those on the margins appear to be susceptible to self-medication by readily available legal products. We therefore have those on the margins of the general population engaging in behaviours which cause a further decline in their natural inherited abilities. The natural inherited abilities which precipitated them being on the margins of society. We now find ourselves amid a pandemic of people on the margins of society, barely maintaining a daily existence, and feared by the established majority.

Just what is the established majority? It varies by the geographical location of ethnic and cultural beginnings. Is there a common thread? Perhaps there is. In these geographical pockets, there is a cognitive decline. A cognitive decline to be expected, but denied. A gradual decline because of the lack of genetic diversity. During the past century, this gradual decline has gone unnoticed. Labour requirements were met based on the cognitive abilities of the general population. Unemployment diminished, population increased, wealth and power established its foundations. Foundations? Foundations based on the previous 50 years, "everything happens for a reason". Widely accepted social movements, internal validations in social groups. Five decades for the spread of Christian white supremacy, its self validation. Further elevated by the events of the Cold War. The dominance of ideology firmly establishing the North American continent to be at "theocracy", though the term theocracy is denied and asserted to be "freedom". Just like the Salem witch trials, to be identified as an individual, thinking outside of this populism, has dire consequences. As long as the academic normal in the general population is that you can read and write, be accepted by your peers, you are safe to belong. If as an individual you are an incapable of doing your own tax returns, for example, you're still an acceptable community member, because there will always be someone that will do it for you, for a fee. Therefore, in a broad sense, individuals that can be part of the economic process of the populism group are kept. Those that become a burden to the populist society are pushed to the fringes. Thus, in some extremes geographically, we have now established many theologically based retirement gated communities. Can we change the direction of this current circumstance? Those that live in the theologically based retirement gated communities will never accept change outside of their own life experiences. There is no so-called "reeducation". Those that are on the outside of society, outside of the gated communities, are in continued cognitive decline resulting from self-medication and substance abuse.

Is there a solution?

There appears to be no immediate solution. You cannot rehabilitate or retrain those that are on the margins. Cognitive impairment because of decades of survival existence is highly unlikely to be reversed. Even if change can be induced, to what end? Changes in producing goods and services have always been on the path of eliminating labour. With artificial intelligence and robotics, even those that can be rehabilitated and salvaged from the margins of society will have few places to establish a productive and meaningful future.

The extremes in the theological gated retirement communities will simply pass into the history books, with little or no consequence to the future, other than their participation in the democratic process at the ballot box. End life circumstances will gradually remove them from influential participation.

Unless we study the past, we are at risk of repeating it.

Therefore, through careful examination of this past century, it should become apparent that institutions and government must be separated from ideology. A common ground, universal application of knowledge and truths, for all of those in society. The contributing disruptor is "theology". There is an underlying flaw in social general practice. An elephant in the room. As long as we continue to allow theological freedom in families and communities, we will most times simply be repeating the past. Why? Because when the cultural and social norm is to pass on the hereditary teachings begins at the earliest probable age, future generations are already biased to their cultural and ethnic roots. Take, for example, a child less than one-year-old, inheriting cognitive ability, 50% inherited, the other 50% to be developed as the grow. If perhaps the general 50% inherited cognitive ability is only 25% of the general population, and they are brought up in an ideological family environment, they are already at a disadvantage to be a high achiever. The outcome is that they will fit in to their social environment, perhaps achieve a Grade 8 education, and be part of the labour force. Because of the limited abilities of cognitive ability, the application of logic and reason, of which they did not inherit, they will probably be the staunch supporters of the ideology of their community. The most suitable for taking responsible leadership roles in their theological biased environment. Active taking part in taxpaying members, living a productive life, however continuing the hereditary gradual downward path of the geopolitical society that it is part of. Perhaps an individual such as described would be the leader in the Washington January 6 insurrection, or the Canadian freedom 2022 Rally in Ottawa. We have cultivated and created our bed. Short-term planning, when the next election, whether it be at a local civic, or on the international stage, is the process of our time. As a species, we are becoming more and more incapable of planning for a sustainable future for the greater good of all members of our species.

Sunday, August 21, 2022

The Universal Skill Among Species


The lowest common denominator, a behavioural trait observed in many species.

"Intimidation." Observed in many mammals, the leader of the herd. Survival of the fittest? Not necessarily, the individual with the healthiest biological indicators, however not of the physical size and strength, is unlikely to be the successor through intimidation, to be the leader. In the natural world, this is "populism". As Charles Darwin observed, the survival of the fittest, future generations carry the genetic traits of both physical strength and abilities for intimidation. Social control.

As history shows us, careers, professions, have enabled many of our species to have multiple generations of comfort. This past century has showed the greatest amount of change, perhaps in all of human history. Therefore, careers and professions spanning multiple generations have become obsolete. No longer could a person aspire to be a sail maker, highly honed their skill, and pass their business on to their children. Harness and saddles were another highly developed and respected career. The career or profession which spanned multiple generations in the past has been replaced. Replaced by the need for multiple career changes. The decision to engage in higher education, possibly for a career that is obsolete before the higher learning is completed. The new career may endure a decade or two.

From this current point of view, a few observations. The first observation is that a highly developed personal skill of "intimidation". It is universally transferable throughout our species. Individuals with a highly tuned understanding, achieving a hold positions socially and economically and receive higher renumeration. In today's world, these people are sought after by multinational corporations specifically for these attributes, which result in corporate expansion, higher share value, higher dividends to shareholders.

The second observation, it's the same as the first except for one subtle difference. Today's highly successful global economy results from "The Three-Legged Stool". Colonialism, capitalism and Christianity. All three legs of this stool require high intimidation. So what is the one observable foundation of colonialism which has attained the highest sophistication? "Christianity", the single component of colonialism, which is the cohesion, the glue, of the entire social, geopolitical undertaking. Many centuries have developed psychological skills among clergy that keep social hierarchy. Clergy, as a career choice, becomes a career with the least probability of obsolescence. Over the centuries, clergy manage populism, coerce their followers by whatever means necessary. For colonialism is simply the spread of ideology managed by clergy, through acts of war and missionary outreach. There are only two paths, assimilation or genocide. Today we deal with, and expose, inaccurate historical records, hereditary scars. Current global efforts are for universal solidarity, fairness, of all members of our species. For example; there are no genetic or biological barriers to the indigenous individual from New Zealand, becoming our next “Einstein”.

Over the past centuries, there is a common thread among Western European societies. The common thread, highly refined by the Greeks and the Romans. "The Games". During our current era of "games", athletes have become the most highly paid of our culture. Charisma and intimidation, "the enforcer", a common denominator of today's team sports. It is common for us to observe sporting events nationally and internationally syndicated, where team players exhibit ritual to display their pride and solidarity to their religious affiliation. However, a social change is taking place. "Toxic behaviour", "toxic masculinity" are being revealed throughout the media to be the "predators". The previously unspoken boundaries and hereditary foundations of power are being exposed. Highly achieved careers are being shattered, chains of toxic predatory power revealed in the media, by victims observing other victims coming forward. A wave of unacceptable behaviour becoming clearly visible across many societies. "The old boys’ network", "the way we do things around here". The most obvious common thread throughout, the involvement of clergy. The de facto management organization of power and authority. "Everything happens for a reason." Perhaps in the "fake it before you make it" realm of social behaviour, clergy are the most highly refined social structure. The highly refined social structure for the hereditary dissemination of toxic behaviour and narcissism. Toxic behaviour and narcissism are close cousins, one cannot exist without the other. Colonialism and capitalism cannot exist unless society condones and perpetuates these behaviours.

Saturday, August 13, 2022

Starting With Two

Photo by Jens Lelie on Unsplash

Breaking it down to just two, dividing people into two major categories. Those that are inquisitive, and striving for knowledge, those that find intimidation the most efficient approach. After all, being inquisitive and gaining knowledge requires basic skills learned in early childhood. It requires a concerted effort. As a species we have many more attributes than most of the other life forms on this biosphere. Therefore, because we can improve our survival skills throughout life, being inquisitive and keeping knowledge, being self-reliant, has many positive attributes. However, as we observe in many other species, physical power, intimidation, is the predominant normal. In many large mammals, the dominant male controls the social structure, and therefore keeps the dominant genetic lineage.

Perhaps, that our species has always had these two broad divisions. Our current time of global communication simply allows populism to find its echo chambers. The very personal identity, self-esteem and self-confidence, gravitate towards their echo silos. Alternative facts and fake news go viral. Perhaps it could be said that these extremely emotionally charged members of our society can upset democratic processes just through the spread of viral misinformation.

Homegrown terrorism, individuals super charged emotionally, emboldened by viral messages perhaps pushed to their breaking point, "well somebody has to do something, I guess I have to."

Can we trace this back to an earlier beginning? Perhaps. By this, I ponder causation for earlier beginning in individuals. Simply hereditary continuance. Yes, there are natural inherited attributes, brought to my attention that perhaps 50% of our adult persona. The remaining 50% is therefore available for us to nurture and develop. If this remaining 50% from the earliest age is channeled by parental guidance heavily slanted by social and cultural norms. It's the natural desire for parents to guide their children towards a life of social acceptance, and therefore the default outcome is conformity. A higher family social involvement in community, precipitates the natural tendency towards the cloning of behaviours. Whether this be accomplished through gentle encouragement, or intimidation, the young mind is shaped. There are many directions, two that come to mind are; religious teachings, group team sport participation. Perhaps most times both directions are being pursued. It is in this regard that I suggest the following. Both religious teachings, and group team sports are hierarchal and authoritarian by design. The young mind is conditioned to adhere to authority. By design hierarchal power and authority. Climb the ladder to success, be a leader, maybe you will eventually be at the top? Purity of the structure is foremost, individuals may be fallible however the structure may never be tarnished. This appears to be the trend in religious affiliations, sports teams, as well as academic institutions. Perhaps it may be fair to say that all human social groups constructed are infallible by nature, as maintained by populism, despite proven documented indiscretions.

Keep in mind that during the earliest impressionable years of the child, parental guidance is both the facilitator and the responsible agent for underdevelopment of natural skills. A strict and regimented path of development discourages two-way communication in both religious studies and team sports. It is all about the future goal of being on a winning team, and socially fitting in. It is for this reason that the underdevelopment of natural skills is endangered. In order for the young mind to develop their natural inquisitive nature, curiosity and self-identity. Here begins the contrast. The young mind left to discover and learn, with simple nurturing and guidance, develops a self-confidence and self-esteem based on discovery, learning and experience. A path through life begins. The previously mentioned direction is about conformity and adherence to authority.

Over the past years it is been my opinion that in the process of normal social interactions, shared knowledge and experiences requires none of the participants to assume a position of authority. If the social interaction is between people of similar inquisitive nature, and curiosity, then all participants will learn from the experience. However here becomes the divergence of social harmony. Social interactions, where one or more of the individuals come from a background of the hierarchal and authoritative path, friction and dysfunction are the highly probable interactions. The individuals from hierarchal and authoritative paths default in most cases to assuming their personal role as the authoritative individual. It is here suggested that an assumed authoritative role is driven by ego. Self-confidence is the close cousin of ego, knowledge and understanding and experience are seldom required. It's about posture. "Fake it till you make it." Why? Perhaps there is a very simple answer. And that answer is, when the inquisitive nature has been suppressed or oppressed, it simply never developed. An individual devoid of self-esteem and self-confidence because of self-development. When knowledge, experience and self-development skills are missing then domination and intimidation fills the void. Perhaps then populism is simply collections of echo chambers of those deprived of personal self-development through no fault of their own. They simply don't know any better. Those that realize this, simply conclude that they are so far behind that continuing their path of intimidation is their only option.

There is little doubt that we can conclude the following. Members of our species which are immersed in descendents of capitalist, colonialist and Christian societies have the highest dysfunctional social and economic overall status. Internal denial of narcissistic, toxic behaviours. Glorification of the social and political structure. Assimilation, genocide and intimidation repeated throughout the centuries. This is not a sustainable program of endeavour! Our future depends upon members of our society understanding that we must interrupt and break these hereditary social repetitive cycles. We must stop the rigid paths of development. We need to step back and allow for the young inquisitive mind to show possibilities of greatness and then nurture and guide for each young mind towards the possibility of being the best that it can be. Unfettered by tradition and cultural expectations. We create toxic behaviours in our society, because we as a society inhibited the development of any alternative life path. We as a society, have created the minds of those who are now outside of the social normal expectation, drug addicted, homeless. Home-grown terrorists were homemade, by hereditary ideology. It’s a “race to the bottom”, of elevating those most capable of management of power and authority. For it is these traditional and cultural expectations that have brought us to such a dysfunctional state of multiculturalism. Stop shaping the young minds to be a mirror of ourselves, or our parents and grandparents wanted of us to be.

Sunday, August 7, 2022

Concentric Circles, our fate?

Throughout history, we have the archaeological evidence of many, many collapsed civilizations.

At in the past, there was a crumb of knowledge. That, for a community to achieve stable self sufficiency, a population of approximately three hundred fifty thousand. During our current era, this threshold sets into motion the internal commerce to self replicate with a notable lower need for outsourcing. The time to achieve this density throughout history varies, dependent upon the advancement of the technology of the era. 

Consider for a moment an analogy to the life cycle of a Cottonwood tree. Each year’s growth ring brings new social height to the species. Each growth ring represents the additional layer, considerably larger in displacement, to the previous layers. For example, a growth ring from the century mark would be considerable area displacement compared to a growth ring from the tenth year. During the later years of growth, the inner core declines, and core rot is the eventual near end life cycle. Eventually, the height and mass of the plant, the weakened core, and a high wind event will bring the tree down. The natural life cycle is completed. 

Perhaps a comparison of our human civilizations, past and present, can foreshadow the certainty that awaits. Let’s for a moment set an arbitrary threshold for internal commercial sustainability at a population of five hundred thousand, and an end point of civilization collapse at five thousand years. Internal core rot, perhaps beginning about the three thousand year mark. This is a threshold when the expansion and establishment of new outer growth declines, and the inner core has already declined and collapse because of infrastructure failure. Water, sewer, bridges and other public service infrastructure. The tax revenue collected from the reduced new outer ring is not sufficient for the repair and replacement of core infrastructure. Inflation has ballooned, civic government has ballooned, the entire population centre is top heavy with annual budget costs and trimming in recent decades, delaying the timely replacement of structures at the core. Technological advances of the time of this population area allow for people to retire at an earlier age and live decades longer. This then becomes the additional burden of civic government, along with yearly inflation, to fund from slower growth at the outer new growth areas.  

For further consideration we have observed that ice ages occur about every one hundred and twenty thousand years. There is geological evidence for three, and further evidence that there have been five in the earth’s past. During these natural event the sea level has changed by about one hundred and twenty meters, or over three hundred feet of fluctuation. Observing that life flourishes along coastlines, with this knowledge we know coastlines are in continual movement. Therefore, our civilizations of the past were oblivious to this knowledge, and decline because of natural displacement that sustained them in their era.

This was this morning’s thoughts, more to be expanded upon. Insight is paramount. 

Do we have a problem here?

 Sitting at the laptop at 5 AM! Captain, do we have a problem here?  (... Sometimes you need to just get up, and get back at it! Perhaps a l...