Who IS, What IS, EVIL?

EVIL IS, WHAT EVIL HIDES:

There is no more important question than the nature of Evil. What it consists in. Let alone where it hides. Upon the definition of Evil given by civilization, depends the survival of advanced intelligence on this planet.

We have ever more power. We need ever more intelligence to manage it. We need an ever stricter morality, to motivate said intelligence.

As we will see by the end of this essay, enormous evil (starving all of humanity to increase the evil gains of those who lead us) is already in place. It’s not just my (long held) opinion. Science magazine even agrees.

To motivate ever stricter mentality, we learn to become ferocious. This is a long held truth, not just of Islam and Christianity, but also Buddhism:

Exterminator Of Evil, Tenkeisei. Obviously Such Hard Work, It Requires A Demon

Exterminator Of Evil, Tenkeisei. Obviously Such Hard Work, It Requires A Demon

I scoff when I see German TV making fuzzy the face of the mass criminal who just killed 149 people. What? To protect his privacy? The privacy of evil? Oh, some will say, to protect those who were close to him. Well, are they not co-culprit? From the village where the co-pilot was, he was well known to nuts. People knowing that ought to have contacted Lufthansa, or the authorities.

Evil is all too private.

Let’s make it public.

Some have said, the mass murder by a (implicitly well educated, disciplined) German was unlikely. But Nazi was, mostly, an enormous mass murder-suicide. It differed only in scale.

Fifty years ago, intellectuals worried about nuclear war. On the face of it, it was a strange worry: the USSR and the USA were fighting for world supremacy. Their elites wanted to control the planet, they were overstretched in all ways.

The USSR crashed and burned, Putin is trying to revive the ambers.

Now people have forgotten about nuclear weapons. But they are here, more than ever. Why did they forget? Because the world has become morally asleep. And why that? Because much greater danger are not just looming, but exerting their grip. Reality has become an inconvenient distraction on the way to lucidity.

***

NUCLEAR WAR IS EVER MORE LIKELY:

The situation is worse now: it is easier than ever to make nuclear weapons. It is not just a question of ever more efficient ultracentrifuges in underground fortresses. There are now even more advanced methods, using lasers, to separate Uranium isotopes. The USA itself is starting to use lasers to separate the highly explosive U235.

France and the USA are the two countries in the West which make thermonuclear weapons (Britain just buys them from the USA, and Israel got the technology from France). France and the USA have not made a technological breakthrough that would allow to neutralize nukes.

Say death rays of some sort; although France and the USA dominate in high power, military grade laser technology, said laser tech has not got to the point it could shoot down 99.99% of incoming missiles; actually it could not shoot down one.)

So, at this point, from lack of technological progress, nuclear weapons are still the ultimate weapon. And they are getting ever easier to make.

What does that mean for the talks with Iran? Well, that it is the occasion to refine an intrusive regime of nuclear inspections, to be used as a paradigm with other nations.

And what of Obama’s naive will, initially, to do away with nuclear weapons (thus affording a pretext to give him a Nobel)?

Well, as the world is, the safest way to prevent nuclear war is to augment the military research budgets of the West (only Israel has been doing well that way, devising plenty of anti-ballistic missile systems, with USA help…) Yes, I know, it’s cynical. But flowers won’t work.

***

EVIL HERE, THERE, AND EVERYWHERE:

Usually I roll out the usual suspect, Abrahamic entities. Here now, we have a 27 pilot. He wants to become captain. But he knows his sick mind will not allow it. So he let go with the very depth of the human Dark Side: he brings another 149 innocent people, including babies with himself. The Will To Extermination.

Hitler was just the same.

When the war was clearly lost, the Nazis kept on fighting. At this point many average Germans who previously supported Nazism turned against it: why could not the Nazis give up, as even the Kaiser had, in World War One? Because of the Will to Extermination. The extermination of whom they wanted to exterminate was the Nazis’ main industry in their last few months. If they did not know it before, now the Germans could clearly see that the Will to Extermination was the Nazis’ main motivation. That maybe why the day it surrendered, Germans never supported Nazism again (in most ways; and differently from Japan, where the population never saw their imperial forces in full extermination mode: that happened on the national territory, only in Okinawa, a smallish, distant island).

***

WHEN IS EVIL HIDING? EVIL HIDES ALL THE TIME

The Greeks knew that Pluto could make itself invisible. The evil co-pilot hid his madness from his employer, just as he hid from his employer that he was under doctor’s order to stop working.

Pilots ought to be required to make their health physical and mental PUBLIC property. That ought to be true even for those piloting a car for Uber. If they don’t like it, they can do something else.

To be able to kill people en masse ought to be viewed as a privilege given by the masses to a few, in counterpart of what, they keep an eye on these few, at all and any moment.

Hitler claimed he was out to help oppressed minorities, oppressed workers, and make Germany proud, great. He claimed to be against “plutocrats” (his word!) In truth his real aims were not this, and he knew all too well that he brandished the red of revolution (Soviet style), when actually he was sponsored by plutocrats. And, while he claimed to be a nationalist, he was blatantly and gigantically supported by American plutocrats such as Henry Ford.

Nowadays, Pluto is hiding better than ever.

The world’s richest man, and arguably greatest monopolist, instead of being in jail, has self-defined as the greatest philanthropist, and now directs health research worldwide in the coffers of what he, his family and associates have invested in. All of this tax free, of course.

You want another example of spectacular evil? What about starving people to make corporations and their plutocrats even richer?

***

DO BIOFUEL POLICIES SEEK TO CUT EMISSIONS BY CUTTING FOOD? YES!

A study published yesterday, March 27, 2015, in the journal Science found that government biofuel policies rely on reductions in food consumption to generate greenhouse gas savings.

How much more evil can one get?

Shrinking the amount of food that people and livestock eat decreases the amount of carbon dioxide that they breathe out or excrete as waste. The reduction in food available for consumption, rather than any inherent fuel efficiency, drives the decline in carbon dioxide emissions in government models, the researchers found.

(Indeed, it’s know that “biofuels” are very inefficient. Making ethanol from corn or wheat requires energy that is mostly derived from traditional greenhouse gas-emitting sources, such as coal, natural gas. But then it benefits companies such as Monsanto, which make the Genetically Engineered corn in which Bill Gates is invested!)

Without reduced food consumption, each of the models would estimate that biofuels generate more emissions than gasoline,” said Timothy Searchinger, first author on the paper and a research scholar at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and the Program in Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy.

Searchinger’s co-authors were Robert Edwards and Declan Mulligan of the Joint Research Center at the European Commission; Ralph Heimlich of the consulting practice Agricultural Conservation Economics; and Richard Plevin of the University of California-Davis.

The study looked at three models used by U.S. and European agencies, and found that all three estimate that some of the crops diverted from food to biofuels are not replaced by planting crops elsewhere. About 20 percent to 50 percent of the net calories diverted to make ethanol are not replaced through the planting of additional crops, the study found.

The result is that less food is available, and, according to the study, these missing calories are not simply extras enjoyed in resource-rich countries. Instead, when less food is available, prices go up.

“The impacts on food consumption result not from a tailored tax on excess consumption but from broad global price increases that will disproportionately affect some of the world’s poor,” Searchinger said.

The models used by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board indicate that ethanol made from corn and wheat generates modestly fewer emissions than gasoline. The fact that these lowered emissions come from reductions in food production is buried in the methodology and not explicitly stated, the study found.

The European Commission’s model found an even greater reduction in emissions. It includes reductions in both quantity and overall food quality due to the replacement of oils and vegetables by corn and wheat, which are of lesser nutritional value.

“Without these reductions in food quantity and quality, the [European] model would estimate that wheat ethanol generates 46% higher emissions than gasoline and corn ethanol 68% higher emissions,” Searching said.

The Science paper recommends that modelers show their work more transparently so that policymakers can decide if they wish to seek greenhouse gas reductions from food reductions.

Actually “policymakers” is the concept that hide the truth. It is to We the People to decide whether we should starve so that plutocrats can jet around the world in their private jets, while plotting our fate, and future ill-gotten gains, and powers they attribute themselves ever more generously, while we are invited to partake in ever more austerity.

Plutocracy is not just an inconvenience. As its name indicates, it is the ultimate evil. And it hides. We have to make sure it does not become a fate. And that means, first, to roll it out of its hiding places, from the minds of co-pilots to haughty policies which are anything but.

We are not led by great leaders, intelligence and goodness. We have been led, astray, by viciousness and the basest instincts, all too much. Time to withdraw the respect, and change course. As Dominique Deux half-joked in a comment on this site, time to make an app where passengers will vote: “… automatic implementation of the majority vote.
They’ll never ever vote for doom.
Democracy wins again, and smartphones become useful.”

We are all passengers on this Earth. And any baby has more right to be, than Bill Gates. Or any of our other great leaders. And those who have already abused power massively (see the food for fuel policy above), ought to have less right to be in power than anybody else.

Patrice Ayme’

Searchinger, R. Edwards, D. Mulligan, R. Heimlich, and R. Plevin. Do biofuel policies seek to cut emissions by cutting food? Science 27 March 2015: 1420-1422. DOI: 10.1126/science.1261221.

 

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28 Responses to “Who IS, What IS, EVIL?”

  1. dominique deux Says:

    There is an ever more direct link between plutocracy gone berserk and individuals going berserk with the mass destruction tools they are supposed to steer, control and otherwise manage in a responsible way.

    Current human resource management is based on extreme stress, both from ever less decent livelihoods and ever more stress-inducing workplace relationships. The idea behind that deliberate policy is that as the more vulnerable individuals “opt” out of the system (through social or actual suicide), more stalwart slaves will always be eager to grab their jobs. Suicide patterns in companies under management “reorganization” are so common nobody notices them anymore, except to scoff. But when that criminal management style starts hitting on individuals who are in a position to hurt not just themselves, but many others, disaster is looming. There is a reason why strategic nuc sub commanders or strategic nuc bomber pilots are highly paid, highly regarded individuals. But you don’t tell that to low cost airline managers – after all, they’re highly paid (though not highly regarded) to take risks, just not personal risks.

    Contrary to media hand-wringing, the mechanism of the amok or berserker is well documented. Ajax’ case was studied in depth by Homer and Sophocles. At the root of the individual’s mind snap, there always is a stressful situation which severs the social link, makes its stump unbearably painful, and can only be allayed by turning against fellow humans in a reversal of that link. Such situations, it was assumed, could not be avoided (although Sophocles’ plays on Ajax and Philoctetes could be seen as attempts at cathartic therapy).

    But now, such situations are engineered on a large scale. Anything for the bottom line! Stand by for more casualties. They come at no cost.

    (btw I’m not assuming anything about that copilot. He could even have been perfectly sane, for all we know.)

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      The copilot was full nuts. I read the Bild article I quoted. The girlfriend was a stewardess. Got to run right now for a party of plutos… Small types…

      • dominique deux Says:

        No problem with that. In which case, my more general analysis fully applies, IMHO. As an example, would a full-cost airline be satisfied with such low screening standards? Hire wrecks, squelch them dry, give them a state of the art aircraft. Staggering. And so logical.
        Get used to it, we’re every bit as expendable as consumers as as employees.
        The next step is making our deaths profitable in themselves. Working on it, to be sure.

        • dominique deux Says:

          Let me bet that the next time that fully owned Lufthansa subsidiary approaches Airbus for a new order, they bargain hard for a reduced price, on account of the “safety incident” “caused” by the hardened cockpit door.

        • John Rogers Says:

          The American auto industry has done cost/benefit analyses for years on safety issues. If fixing a defect is more costly than paying off the statistically estimated death claims caused by it, then death (and the bottom line) win!

          • Patrice Ayme Says:

            This is the result of MBAs all over. They only know cost benefit analysis in term of the only arbitrage of all things, money. However Gates and other “philanthropes” pay increasing attention to their reputations: it beats being criminally prosecuted by the government, any day! Of course much, maybe most of what they do is fake and all about themselves gathering even more power…

        • Patrice Ayme Says:

          Pilots are indeed paid very little in cheap airlines, and that has already caused crashes. Lufthansa was in the middle of a strike when this happened.
          In the world we had in the 1950s, a bright youth would try to become a pilot. Now they go for MBAs, “Science” Po, etc.

  2. ianmillerblog Says:

    Dear Patrice, I rather think the US/USSR “cold war” was not so much from evil, but rather stupidity (and in my opinion, there has always been a surfeit of that) and the inability to understand and communicate with the other. Russia could see the fanatical anti-communism of the US (McCarthy) and also knew that at the end of WW2 Patton wanted to keep going and sort out the commies. The US could see the USSR busy arming themselves with nukes (overlooking the fact they were doing the same) so they kept at it.

    I agree the danger is worse now, largely because more have them, but the fact that the US is busy developing better ways to get U235 is not encouraging either. Both them and the Russians have enough nukes to turn the planet into an ashcan.

    As an aside, the USDA has calculated that growing corn for ethanol gives a ratio of energy out/energy in of 2.3, if done properly. Of course, there is a minor issue of the 2nd law of thermodynamics that must be brought in if the output is work, but that never bothers modellers. The food issue is more complicated by the issue, who pays the farmers? If they can get more money through biofuels, they will do so. Those who say the corn should go to feed the hungry have to nominate who will pay for it. In my country, anyway, the government is so busy trying to reduce spending there is a problem with medical treatment, such as cancer patients. I doubt governments in their current political leanings are going to do much more to feed the starving than they already do.

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      USA-USSR as stupidity contest, I agree. But there was also real bad blood, for cause, say because of wars like the one in Greece!

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Dear Ian: The whole article in Science yesterday was about the fact the USDA computation (and equivalent ones in the EU) don’t work. They explain the recent rise of price of foods beyond CPI, while quality went down.

      The simple fact laser enrichment works, as the USA loudly develops it, is, indeed telling. BTW the French are very firm about barring Iranian access to nukes. It’s not just that Laurent Fabius the hyper experienced foreign minister is Jewish, but that France probably sees the whole thing as a training ground for muscular non-proliferation.

  3. brodix Says:

    Patrice,
    To carry over from the previous conversation, are plutocracy and evil descriptions, or explanations?
    Think in terms of a wave, as the mechanism of the various scenarios you mention, such as more for the rich and less for the poor. Such as a tsunami wave, as it is approaching, all the water first pulls back. Such is with rich and poor. There are going to be waves, because the alternative is a flat line, but the issue is how to manage them.
    The tool by which the rich control the system is most specifically the financial system. It is the economic medium by which any society larger than a few dozen people needs to function and those managing it can use it to siphon value out of the society, as they make the economy more integrated and thus more effective at using resources.
    Now there is also the issue of the earth having limited resources and the best long term strategy requires husbanding them for a vital society that can instinctively moderate its appetites for those resources.
    Now money functions as a medium of exchange, much like a road system. yet we treat it as a commodity. The advantage for those managing this system is that a commodity is something we acquire for private needs and a medium of exchange is a social function. Much as roads are usually a form of public commons.
    Now due to their greed, those managing this system are destroying it, but it is also a society wide greed for individual monetary wealth that is the energy beneath the surface driving this wave.
    Now if people were to better understand that money is actually a form of contract and every asset is backed by a debt, with the vast majority being public debt that we as a community owe those holding those notes, then they might better understand why governments are so motivated to spend money they don’t have, in order to increase this public debt and thus notational wealth.
    If governments were to actually try to balance their books, the economy would implode.
    My government, the US and probably most others, has a budgetary system specifically designed not to budget. By having the legislature put together these enormous spending bills and add enough extra to buy enough votes, which then the president can only pass or veto, is like bribing a child to eat an apple by giving him candy bars.
    To budget is to list priorities and spend according to ability. If the government wanted to budget, it could have the legislature break these bills into their various items and have every legislator assign each a percentage value and put them back in order of preference. Then the president could draw the line at what to spend. As Harry Truman might have put it, ‘The buck stops here.”
    Now this would seriously reduce federal spending on local projects, but if we were to build a public banking system from the ground up, with local community banks spending profits on local projects, not only would this keep money within the community and not funding billionaire financiers and excess armies, but people might learn that value can be stored in community relations and healthy environments and not just in banks, with societies atomized into isolated peoples.

    One time my daughter was ranting about patriarchal tendencies in the catholic church, of which she and her mother attended and I pointed out the absolute is basis, not apex, so a spiritual absolute would be the essence from which we rise, not an ideal from which we fell. If people understood that, then they would better respect this soil from which we rise, not desiccate it for some ideal being pushed on them by a media out to cater to their sweet tooth.

    Regards,
    John

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Dear John: A thorough description turns often into an explanation.
      Money creation was governmental for millennia. Now we have a mostly private system, and that obviously does not work, as it induces plutocracy.

      • brodix Says:

        Patrice,
        Description is all we have. We describe the wave by amplitude and frequency. Does that mean the wave is an effect of amplitude and frequency, or amplitude and frequency are an expression of the wave?

        There was also a time when government was mostly private. It was called monarchy. The question is similar to the above;
        Is government, as well as the financial system mediating exchange, an expression of the underlaying society, or is society a function of the order expressed by government and mediated by currency?

        The problem is similar. When we insist on description as more important than what is being described, then we lose sight of the underlaying causal dynamics, in favor of those intellectually easy definitions.

        • brodix Says:

          Yet without that order and mediation, there will not be much society, so it is a dichotomy of both top down and bottom up.

        • Patrice Ayme Says:

          Amplitude and frequency are a full description of the wave iff it is a standing wave.
          All human structures, down to neurology, have inertia. We indeed have inertia towards a privatizing of power in society right now. It’s unsustainable… Causal dynamics, indeed.

          • brodix Says:

            Wealth begats power, begats more wealth.
            There were times when there were resources and increasing knowledge and technology that large portions of humanity were pulled along in this process, but now it is eating its own and there are predators and prey.
            Fighting the powers, like Occupy and the Arab Spring, is like the antelopes turning on the lions. The lions are not too concerned. The problem for the lions is when there are no more antelopes, or too many lions, or both.
            We are reaching that point and the lions are starting to fight amongst themselves, biting whoever is close enough to bite.
            It is a good time to be a squirrel, than a lion. It takes a much smaller ecosystem to support a squirrel than a lion.
            When the bubble of illusionary wealth does pop and this quantized hope stored in the banks vanishes, the bankers will have no more strings to pull and hope will turn to fear and those who pull the strings of fear might feed a few bankers to the hungry masses.
            Being on the downside of middle aged makes me much more observant than involved. I’ve been telling my daughter since she was a child that her generation will have to put it back together again. She is in second year college now. Majoring in public heath and political science.

            • Patrice Ayme Says:

              In a relatively recent essay, I have a picture of a Gnu charging a Cheetah. The full sequence is hilarious, and the felid barely escapes with his hide intact. Gazelles can kill. Even people: their horns are really sharp. I knew of a big white man in Africa, a tennis player, who was killed by a “tame” gazelle.

              Squirrel nations are getting eaten, right now.

              Good luck to your daughter. No doubt she will appreciate the viciousness of the maneuver of decreasing CO2 by lowering food quantity and quality while increasing its price thanks to “Biofuels”.
              PA

            • brodix Says:

              Analogies have their limits.

              I’ve also told her her generation will have lots of opportunities for character building. The ones who survive.

            • Patrice Ayme Says:

              Human beings are born survivors. It is true that, as one sees war extending throughout the Middle East, one gets the impression of a great unravelling. Catastrophic scenarios are easy to make…

            • brodix Says:

              When politics becomes a blurr, as all the lions are biting each other, is when we consider it in terms of physics and it is a vortex. The only way to stop a vortex is to take energy away from it, not put more into it.
              Yet most people want to jump into one side or another, because we are all connected.

  4. dimvisionary Says:

    *standing ovation* These two lines are so excellent, among all the excellence that is this post. “Evil is all too private. Let’s make it public.” Reminds me of an old adage: “murder will out.” The initiation of physical violence among humans is a subtle business, but not so subtle that it cannot be recognized and avoided. For me it is crucial to consider that ‘evil’ does not physically exist, only metaphysically in the human mind. Can we learn to behave without plutocracy?

    • Patrice Ayme Says:

      Thanks Dimvisionary! Living without, or with very little, or with much less than anywhere else, plutocracy has been achieved many times in the past, and those times were always characterized by great progress.
      The cities of Sumer are an example, Very Ancient Egypt another, so was Crete, 4,000 years ago. Then of course the most democratic of Greek Cities.
      Even the first cities, in Anatolia, 8,000 years ago had no palace, thus no Plutos.

      At this point either we get rid of/quickly mitigate plutocracy, or we die. And not just as one civilization among many. But as a biosphere.
      The California snowpack is 8% of normal, the lowest ever measured on March 27.

      Things are changing fast.

      • dimvisionary Says:

        I can only agree. The building is on fire and there is no exit. On many levels. How pollyana am I to think that we talked our way into this mess and we can talk our way out. Can we make reason irrational enough for humans?

        • Patrice Ayme Says:

          Well discourse is controlled now. I am being censored on a regular basis in the Main Stream Media, sometimes with as much as 50% frequency (say by the New York Times). The Economist has censored me for quoting the Qur’an in a comment of one of their articles on…Islam. And so on.
          All this is perfectly rational from the plutocratic point of view.

      • pshakkottai Says:

        Hi Patrice: Also true in India. In the south we see ancient temples but no palaces. The kings lived in simple buildings that left no traces.
        Partha.

        • Patrice Ayme Says:

          Dear Partha:
          Yes, there are plutocratic markers. All over. The societies which make great strides, like South India, have fewer of them, and sometimes, none at all.
          I have to answer this Duviel, who, comment after comment on just one essay, insists that I am dangerous… As I risk to “inflame the masses”… Got myself an inflamed Pluto apparently…

  5. Subtle Is The World, And Vicious Sometimes | Patrice Ayme's Thoughts Says:

    […] There is a global anti-nuclear paranoia, at least among so-called, self-declared “progressives”. In truth civil nuclear energy, properly done is not just rather safe, but much safer than the alternative (burning fossil fuels, or cutting on food quality and quantity to make fuel). […]

  6. SDM Says:

    You make very keen observations about plutocracy and the state of civilization. The question in my mind is what steps have you taken, aside from your blog, to change the current course. Some details surface in your blog, such as your encounters with Obama, and it is clear that your anonymity is being protected. US media is rife with corporate propaganda and there appears to be little appetite for a real debate of the crucial issues among the general population. I cannot recall how I came upon your blog and am glad that you have a presence on facebook- perhaps more exposure of your thoughts will come of this.

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