Monday 6th of April 2020

fifty-one shades of bullshit...

grey
We know we bullshit. We’re brilliant at it. Trying to understand the human condition has led men and women to read the future in the entrails of dead chickens and to build pyramids.


Building pyramids makes as much sense as a rich person trying to get away with the loot, once six feet under… we imagine we can. It’s us. The antiquity is full of interpretations of events that make as much as sense as a pair of clouds we see as a dog and a pink pig… It’s charming, but as true as fake news — even if the event is made of red bricks or cut stones to fit a monument to our deluded aspirations.

There is a lot of “coincidences” in life, many of which evolved in conjuction to the rest. For example, cells "cannot do the wrong things” should there not be the correct chemical present. In molecular biology, our interpretations of say "aberrant messenger RNAs", is to say cells have got some quality control mechanisms that prevent the wrong thing happening. Nothing is willy-nilly in these processes that we don’t see nor feel, except that “we’re ageing” (changing according to specific chemical activity — in which the food we eat and the cigar we smoke may have some bearing upon)… Serious observations can define these “quality control mechanisms”. These QCMs eventually fail us. We get cancer or become demented.

Say:

Translation of aberrant messenger RNAs that lack in-frame stop codons leads to malfunctioning proteins. To prevent this deleterious effect, cells have quality control processes to monitor translation into polyadenylated regions, including ribosome stalling. Using a combination of biochemistry and structural biology approaches, Chandrasekaran et al. show how ribosomes stall selectively on polyadenylated regions. Polylysine peptide (the codon AAA is decoded as lysine) in the exit channel of a ribosome slows translation, whereas a stabilized polyadenylated RNA helix in a ribosome decoding center blocks incoming transfer RNAs. Therefore, coincidence detection of both polylysine and polyadenylate allows polyadenylated regions, but not polylysine, within normal coding regions to halt translation.

Nat. Struct. Mol. Biol. 26, 1132 (2019).

Here, this is still in the realm of observation and interpretations, while passing a minimum value-judgement, that is as close as possible to the observe "coincidental” — yet seemingly essential —phenomenon. But in human relationships, there is a lot of leeway for “interpretations”, manipulation and bullshit.

No wonder some jokers can push this excellent BS barrow:

On May 19, 2017, peer-reviewed journal Cogent Social Sciences [4] published "The conceptual penis as a social construct", which argued that penises are not "male" and are better analyzed as social constructs.[5] The same day, James A. Lindsay and Peter Boghossian revealed it to be a hoax aimed at discrediting gender studies, although Cogent Social Sciences is not exclusively a gender studies journal.[6] While the journal did conduct a postmortem, both authors concluded the "impact [of the hoax] was very limited, and much criticism of it was legitimate."[7]



Read more:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grievance_studies_affair


Fake news, fake histories and fake “social studies” are not new. The bible itself is fake news going back a few milleniums and added to under Emperor Constantine, about 1700 years ago. Many people — especially those who criticise the fakeness of these new funny “social studies” like that of James A. Lindsay and Peter Boghossian — often “believe” in the god-made-us-in-His (god is a male)-image mantra. Oh boy...

This is the case of Rod Dreher who relish the fact that the “liberals” (not the Australian CONservatives "Liberals" who are on the right of politics and who worship Trump) and the (woke) "progressives" have been fooled by the various hoaxes published in serious psychological journals. Let’s be frank here: psychology is a borderline science — as accurate as predicting the weather for Sunday, three weeks from now. Predicting global warming on the other hand is as easy to understand as "cells quality control mechanisms". These are real thingies that work. It's going to "get warmer"...

The trio referred to a series of academic fields—postcolonial theory, gender studies, queer theory, critical race theory, intersectional feminism, and fat studies—as "grievance studies" because, according to Pluckrose, they begin "from the assumption of a grievance" and then bend "the available theories to confirm it."[10] Pluckrose argued that all of these fields derive their underlying theoretical perspectives from the postmodernism which developed in the late 1960s. Focusing on the work of the French postmodern philosopher Michel Foucault, she highlighted how he argued that knowledge and power were interwoven and emphasised the role of discourse in society.


Grievance? So? 

Imagine that a couple of milleniums ago, Romans nailed a guy to a cross and a whole industry of beliefs was born — and is still going strong today, with many variants like adaptating viruses and distortions — from Mormonic and orthodoxic, to Evangelical — suffering a bit in having to add to the sauce to stay tuned with the present fluxing circumstances of society. And the Jews, bless 'em, they don't believe in little Jesus... Oh and by the way, they're still waiting for him to turn up...


IT WAS A HOAX, GUYS! The killing of someone called Jesus might have happened, but the reported rigmarole around this dude being “god” was used to fool people in the same manner that "penises are not male and are better analyzed as social constructs". According to the legend, this god-dude died to save us from the “original sin” — the first sin ever committed by perfectly godot-created humans, when they stole an apple from the garden of Eden, contrary to the instructions. I have real news for you: the first two humans, the descendants of whom were incestuous, never existedThe original sin is A HOAX. The truth of the human matter resides in EVOLUTION of life on this little planet which matters as much as a rat’s fart in the entire universe. But as insignificant as we are, we felt we needed to pump our social ego with stories of fear of godot and demons, of wild beast and lightnings, otherwise we would behave like monkeys… May be not, actually… May be not. Rats?

———————

In political science, it makes sense to think of political trust not as a singular concept, but a composite in which each citizen’s view combines their level of trust in any or all of three things: the performance of government, its processes and its probity. Instinctively, political leaders know that all of these “three p’s” are at play. Indeed, it helps explain how and when we see efforts to manipulate them for advantage. In order to win Australia’s 2004 federal election, then Prime Minister John Howard famously confronted the challenges to the government’s honesty created by the “children overboard” affair (trust in probity) by converting the debate into one about “who you can trust” to deliver on policy and the economy (trust in performance). As John Uhr explained in Terms of Trust, this conversion was not a spur-of-the-moment decision. Rather, in a chilling foretaste of the “death of truth” associated with surging right-wing populism now, it resulted from a deliberate plan to twist the discourse. Liberal Party pollster Mark Textor told The Bulletin that at the start of that campaign he and other strategists identified the need to secure a “redefinition of honesty” away from being a “technical thing” to being “a matter of behaving in a consistent and understandable way” — “a kind of consistency honesty” rather than “the-letter-of-the-law honesty.”

Fast forward to “fake news” and the serial, sociopathic disregard of facts by US President Donald Trump, and we see the process complete: a bid to sustain trust disconnected from truth or probity. However, the trouble for populist leaders is that, ultimately, people do recoil from lies and their consequences — and when the recoil comes, it will likely be more bitter and destructive than rejection of poor performance alone.

The same goes for popular trust based only on “process.” At one point, Francis Fukuyamamaintained his faith that “despite recent authoritarian advances, liberal democracy remains the strongest, most broadly appealing idea out there” — because “most autocrats, including Putin and Chávez, still feel that they have to conform to the outward rituals of democracy even as they gut its substance.” But if trust in probity is under pressure, there is little chance of popular trust in participation and process saving the day. Like doubts about the performance of governments, scepticism about their commitment to fair and inclusive processes are part of the normal engine room of politics — but doubts about probity take things to a different level. Add dishonesty and self-serving partiality to the mix, and mere disappointment or disempowerment can turn into a sense of betrayal. Things become not only polarised, but toxic.


Read more:

https://www.abc.net.au/religion/democracy,-corruption-and-the-erosion-of...


Sometimes we discover the truth by using observations of the stuff around us, with precision. Politics isn’t a science but an art form in which we bullshit and let ourseves be bullshitted to. To the contrary, as already mentioned, SCIENCE IS BRUTAL. The more sciences — real sciences — the more chance we can know reality. Thus we need to exclude the art formats of “sciences” that can be manipulated such as politics, economics, religion and to a great extend some of psychology and its derivative on human behaviour — because we can lie and we do. We have mixed entertainment and invention of stories that "become the truth" when repeated often enough around the camp fires — thus we stop asking the questions that demand real answers, should we seek to understand. 

Real questions. Rod Dreher always asks fake questions that are pitifully framed by his beliefs. And he gloats like a young girl when the progressive are caught in their own web of deceit, not realising he has been caught a long time ago in a silly FAKE system of credences. But he sticks at it, because it’s his lifebuoy to believe in godot… It’s his right if he wants to. No dispute. But please stop bothering about showing us the caca in the pseudo-sciences brought on by a jocular fat Helen Pluckrose and her penis-equipped males, James Lindsay and Peter Boghossian… 

Believe whatever you will, but leave us alone as we seek a greater social justice. Social Justice is not a dirty concept, despite not being fully understood. The tenets of the US constitutions are based on “social justice” — for white men exclusively… That we try to extend this social justice to females and coloured people, the trodden and the sexually various, should not frighten us… If we behaved decently we would not need to enshrine extra cumbersome tenets that limit our desires to bash and victimise people because it gives us pleasure or this has been a tradition since we (the Chinese) invented gun powder. Now, under some religion dictums, behaving “decently” is to keep women in their inferior status or condemn to death people who refuse to believe in Allah. This is indecent, even if underhandedly toned-down due to more relax modern social interactions. But to make sure every plays by the same tenets, Social Justice has to be seen to be enacted.



The penis as a social construct”? is as funny as Corporal Jones not being able to salute an officer because he forgot to put his braces on,... and saluting would have had worse consequences than not saluting. So he held his trousers up with both hands in his pockets. But the penis as a social entity? Well if we didn’t use it, our population would soon plumet, but some males use it dangerously and illegally, such as in rape. Rape. Is rape a social justice issue?… Grey area?

Are there vicious, nasty people on the Right who troll others and threaten them? Yes, there are (ask David French about that — his family was harassed mercilessly during 2016 for his Never Trump public stance). But those people are on the fringes of the Right. The haters and harassers on the Left are not just antifa, but are embedded and empowered throughout institutional bureaucracies. Remember James Lindsay:


"The problem of Critical Social Justice isn’t just a thing off in the universities somewhere in Narnia, and it’s not just some weird kids or activists. It’s at work. It’s at school. It’s at home. It’s in your relaxation and entertainment. People are getting sick of it.

———————————

Yes, we’re all sick of people like Rod who think themselves above the fray while they never understood Dante’s inferno, nor the oppression by delusions… nor the scientific evidence of evolution… 

the fix...

Thomas Carlyle, a 19th-century historian, first coined the phrase. Economics, he argued, was the "dismal science".

He had a point. Most economists are either obsessed with "black swan events", on the lookout for "unknown unknowns", or constantly searching for the catalyst to the next big crash.

Carlyle was particularly incensed with claims by economist Thomas Malthus that population would always grow faster than food production, thereby ensuring a future of poverty and starvation for humanity.

Mind you, Carlyle was a big fan of slavery and lobbied for its reintroduction into the West Indies as a way to fix the economy. So, his track record as a social scientist is sketchy to say the least.

But there's one thing Carlyle overlooked. Even the most dismal practitioners of the dismal arts often extract joy from plumbing the depths of despair.

When it comes to mainstream economists, there's nothing they enjoy more than a good old-fashioned disaster.

It's here the dark clouds evaporate, leaving nothing but silver linings.

 

Read more:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-02-17/why-economists-delight-in-doom-co...

the humble black and white code...

"For all the talk of technological breakthroughs today, arguably the quiet triumph of 20th century technology for the retail sector has been the barcode. Retailing might be simple, but it isn't easy," Jonathan Reynolds, academic director of the Oxford Institute of Retail Management at Oxford University, told DW. The barcode is a "compact, elegant and flexible solution," he added.

The barcode is so universal it's hard to believe someone actually had to invent it. But someone did. At the request of the grocery industry, and tweaking the earlier work of others, American engineer George Laurer headed a team that created the "universal product code," or UPC, and the necessary scanning equipment. It was first used to buy a package of gum at a supermarket in Ohio in 1974.

The grocery industry, which sells baskets full of cheaper goods, had a real incentive to make the checkout process easier, faster and more accurate. According to sources at the time, barcodes made checkout lines 40% quicker while also eliminating the need to put individual price tags on each item — or change them when prices went up or down. They also stopped customers from swapping price stickers on products. With more advanced software, it was soon possible to see what was selling well and have up-to-the-minute inventories.


A hard sell at first

Despite all the promised advantages, the uptake of barcodes was slow. Retailers were reluctant to invest in the necessary scanners. They didn't want to sink cash into technology that would possibly not last long.

Additionally, many shoppers were leery that their purchases could be tracked, or worse they would be cheated because the price was no longer printed on each item. Conspiracy theories followed. With today's constant surveillance this seems like a quaint idea, but at the time barcodes were a tough sale.

 

Read more:

https://www.dw.com/en/black-on-white-the-amazing-life-of-the-simple-barc...

 

and now try this QR symbol: 

yd


let me know if it links you to this site on your smart phone...

 

Read from top.