Archive for October, 2021

Housing Bubbles, Taxes, Leverage, etc. And What It Means For The Biosphere

October 31, 2021

What does housing have do with wisdom? Everything. We used to be called cavemen…When we were more honest. 

Owning real estate has, in many nations and states, a taxation aspect. Consider California’s top real estate areas. The prices of houses there doubled, or trebled, in the last ten years. Purchase such a house now: one will have to pay 2% of the cost of the house, as a tax, annually. Typically. 

So say the house was worth 500K ten years ago. That means one has to pay $30,000 tax, every year, after purchasing that same house at inflated 2021 prices. Then say the worth of the real estate market collapses by 50% as it has done several times in the past in the hot areas. The house price will collapse down to 750K, but the new owner still has to pay the 30k annual tax. It gets worse when one considers leverage. The same house would have been, typically, purchased with 20% down (typically wiping out most of a middle class family saving, after closing costs, etc.). So suddenly these savings are wiped out at any 20% downturn in real estate… The same 300K could have been saved and invested at the typical 7% financial markets provide with. The typical leverage of one to five of real estate guarantees sharp downswings, as observed: owners who were speculating by buying real estate always try to get out fast enough to prevent the wiping out of their principals.  

Meanwhile President Biden says he will not raise taxes for people making less than 400K in income, and went to the Glasgow climate conference in an 85 car fossil fuel caravan (several jumbo jets carried all that)… But an inflation of 10%, pretty much guaranteed at this point, lowers that promise, in constant dollars, down to 360K… Those below 360K will not be spared, especially if very poor and on government assistance: because the assistance they get will suddenly be worth 10%… LESS!

To cool inflation, interest rates will have to go up, and average interest rates are typically much higher. That will make purchasing a house much more expensive, and the market will have to correct accordingly.

Usually real estate is viewed as an edge against inflation, and often works well that way… But not in a massively overbought market: right now one can get, typically, only a fraction of housing ownership cost by renting the owned property, a sure indication that the real estate market can only go down. 

***

The preceding was a comment upon an essay of the very clever Robert J. Shiller, a 2013 Nobel laureate in economics, Professor of Economics at Yale University and the co-creator of the Case-Shiller Index of US house prices. Shiller is the author of Irrational Exuberance, Phishing for Phools: The Economics of Manipulation and Deception (with George Akerlof), and Narrative Economics: How Stories Go Viral and Drive Major Economic Events.

And now for the connection with wisdom…

The well connected phools who lead the biosphere (into catastrophe) are meeting in Scotland, to enjoy electricity made from coal plants. Neanderthals used coal… 100,000 years ago. The pretext is the Conference Of Parties 26 (COP26), 

Guess what? Housing, especially the individual family home, anglospheric people are fanatical about, is a big part of the climate problem. Americans of course are all into that kind of luxury. Apartments use only a third of the energy of individual houses, recent French government data show. Meanwhile in politically correct Berkeley immensely overpriced houses are the object of bidding wars and get sold for up to 100% above the already grotesque asking price. (This depicts the… typical case, of a house which was purchased for 1.6 million dollars five years ago, got proposed for sale at 2.75 million, was the object of a bidding war, and got finally sold for 4.25 million… roughly 50 years of family income, PRE-tax…)

So a house which is an average house for the USA (300 square meters), luxurious for the rest of the planet, can end up being sold for 60 times the average US family income… To which have to added gigantic real estate taxes….  

Of course Berkeley liberals are fake and more than slightly deranged, I know them well, having lived among them and their corrupt descendants, for decades… so they may as well splurge into housing frenzy, it goes with their territory…

When one will get serious about the climate, housing frenzies will have to be washed out, and go down the drain of climate correctness...

Patrice Ayme

***

From Robert Shiller: According to the latest S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, US home prices rose at a record rate of 19.7% in the last year, and now look very unstable. They might increase further for a while, but that may be followed by serious declines….

…”investing in housing in booming locations may not be as safe a long-term bet as many seem to think. Prospective US home buyers might logically assume that their tenure in a house will outlast any interruption to an upward trend in home prices, enabling them eventually to benefit from new highs. After all, real home prices in the United States fell by 36% nationally from December 2005 to February 2012, because of the Great Recession, but then increased by 71% to a level 10% above their 2005 peak.

However, I have been arguing for years that the US housing market’s performance since 2005 is not the only relevant example of long-term home-price trends. My historical data show that real US national home prices were sometimes lower in the 1990s than in the 1890s. Over that century, cities spread out to cheaper land, and building tools, technology, and transportation became more efficient.

So, let’s imagine that, for the past 1,000 years, home prices had beaten the US stock market’s average 7% annual return (after reinvesting dividends) in the twentieth century. During that time, these home prices, after compounding, would have increased by a factor of 24 followed by 28 zeroes.

But hardly any homes from a millennium ago remain today, and hardly anyone would want to live in those that have survived. Furthermore, the land they sat on is often no longer valuable. In Biblical times, for example, Ephesus in western Turkey was a coastal city with magnificent buildings. But its once-valuable harbor has since silted, so that the city’s ruins are now miles from the sea.

… buying a house with a mortgage serves as a self-control mechanism that helps people to save more. The discipline imposed on young homeowners by regular amortizing mortgage payments is a key driver of retirement saving. And buyers can hedge some of their risk in the home price index futures market.

Make no mistake: homeownership clearly has its benefits. But people who really want to buy now need to be sure that they can accept what could be a rather bumpy and disappointing long-term path for home values.

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (AI) VERSUS ARTIFICIAL CONSCIOUSNESS (AC)… Roll Over, Turing!

October 30, 2021

Artificial Intelligence (AI) we have now. Artificial Consciousness (AC) we will have soon. Yes, Consciousness will become a science…

Novels, movies and techies often depict monster Artificial Intelligence, taking the world over. This is unlikely. Instead what we observe is a small oligarchy using AI to take over the world. A confusion has arisen between AI and what I call AC, Artificial Consciousness. Often AI is presented as if it had AC. AI can mimic AC 

The confusion arose from no less than Turing. Turing in his 1950 paper “Computing Machinery and Intelligence” opens with the words: “I propose to consider the question, ‘Can machines think?‘” Because “thinking” is difficult to define, Turing chooses to “replace the question by another, which is closely related to it and is expressed in relatively unambiguous words.” Turing describes the new form of the problem as a three-person game called the “imitation game”, in which an interrogator asks questions of a man and a woman in another room in order to determine the correct sex of the two players. Turing’s new question is: “Are there imaginable digital computers which would do well in the imitation game?” Turing believed this could be answered: he argued against what he viewed as  all the major objections to the proposition that “machines can think“.

Turing was wrong. His error comes from the fact that he forgot about consciousness (scientifically impossible to define at the time)… and speech is digital, discrete, even finite… and the biological support of speech, humans, can be easily out-computed by a classical supercomputer, enumerating any finite list, like a Q&A session. Simply because the classical supercomputer can write more sentences than a human, and anticipate all human sentences. The fact that a machine can write down more numbers than a human doesn’t prove that it “thinks”. To say that thinking reduces to doing more in the matter of long lists, is as intelligent as saying a bulldozer thinks because it can build a bigger road.

Exit Turing.

AI, as presently engineered, is made of programs, sets of sequences of openings of gates and closing of channels carrying electrons. Intelligence literally means reading between the lines: a machine can do that. In practice all this classical machinery is hard to anticipate. Yet, in theory, AI is simple and predictable, it will not get up one day and decide to take over the world.

***

Artificial Consciousness (AC) will be neither simple nor predictable, and could certainly do that, because it will have a soul (so to speak)

What is AC?  Consciousness is known to occur, but its physical nature is unknown. However it will involve what we should call SUB Quantum Mechanics, the mechanics of Quantum Entanglement (QE). We know this, because Quantum Entanglement, being all over the place at once, has started to explain otherwise completely mysterious phenomena, such as photosynthesis, or birds seeing the Earth’s magnetic field (without little compasses, and or magnetized substances in their heads… and humans can do it too!)

Moreover consciousness has a lot in common with the Quantum, in its general behavior (such as the fact that it cannot be shared).

Quantum Computers harness QE. We have some, with a few “Qubits”. The (distant) aim is to have Quantum Computers with billions, or even thousands of trillions of Qubits…. As we, conscious animals, may already have. At this point my prediction is that we will have created Artificial Consciousness. AC, like normal consciousness, will be unpredictable, but even much more so, because it will not have been finely honed by more than half a billion years of social evolution.

Scary? Yes. But there is no alternative.

Or, rather, there is one alternative, the disintegration of civilization [1].

Artificial Intelligence should be distinguished from Artificial Consciousness. Turing confused them both with “thinking”. Well the most important question for the survival of civilization is: “what is thinking?” 

Patrice Ayme

***

[1] In Dune a revolt of intelligence machines have turned humanity against them, and it has learned to do without them. Well, that’s unlikely. A merger and acquisition is more likely…

We appreciate the beauty. Today’s AI does not. Nor could it ever appreciate it, as long as it is only a bunch of canals (for electrons) mechanically, classical-mechanically, opening and closing with not fundamentally more intelligence than an avalanche going down a mountain, AI would make no sense beyond that.
What is it, when we have a feeling, an e-motion? We perceive a whole, beyond just a point of input… Exactly what the Quantum does, which computes with the integrated whole (before the wave packet collapses!)  (San Francisco skyline, lower left; 10/29/2021 picture…)

On The Lying, Cheating And Thoroughly Vicious Evil Propaganda New York Times… From The Holocaust To Right Now

October 29, 2021

The New York Times brazenly tried to justify its vicious, establishment bolstering, self-serving censorship system in a pathetic article. Amusingly, it thereafter had to censor thousands of comments protesting its corruption: 

TIMES INSIDER Why Humans, Not Machines, Make the Tough Calls on Comments

Technology helps The Times field thousands of comments a day. But only human judgment can apply Times standards to reject a submission. One editor gave a tour of the decisions that make up her job.

The article proceeds to say that only comments with cuss words, or ad hominem attacks get barred. That is a huge lie. All too humans humans, well connected enough to the establishment to be able to live in New York, enforce at the NYT a view of the universe that at least half of the USA disagree with… And all progressives too, should they truly want to progress, and not just protest…

***

The New York Times has been vicious since probably before it protected the Nazis by not alerting the USA upon the fact that the Nazis were making an official, if secret, genocidal campaign against Poles and Jews… At the very least. At the time, the so-called “Times” had serious information from the world Jewish Congress and reputable governments (among them Poland and France) about the genocide. It chose to cover it up. 

Why? Because, to put it in the shortest and bluntest way, Wall Street created Nazi Germany (no, this is not an attack against today’s Wall Street…) 

This is not a point of detail on biased journalism: by ignoring what the Nazis were truly doing, the NYT and its duplicates in the USA made public opinion hostile to those hostile to the Nazis. That enabled the Nazis to win enough battles in 1939, 1940, 1941, to make a gigantic holocaust possible. The NYT had it in its power to make a unified “democratic” front against Nazi Germany in 1939-1940… which would have led to Nazism’s prompt defeat, and would have saved the lives of at least 50 million people. But the USA establishment, deep inside its cavernous ego and subconscious did not want this: inside its heart would get warm by a general conflagration, a holocaust in Europe… And that’s what it got. 

Obsolete? No. Look at the AUKUS treaty, what it entails about nuclear weapon proliferation (because of the HEU inside)… and the perspective for war… nuclear war.  

So let me be clear: “Times Standards” are vicious plutocratic propaganda… In English, not Greek: Evil-Rule propaganda. The NYT is reproduced all over the USA, and this giant propaganda machine is a machine to identify plutocracy and civilization. 

Just like a viper adopts the colors of its surroundings, the NYT mimics the sounds, sights, ideas and feelings of progressivism, but is the exact opposite. Don’t smirk: I know of this very well… yet, one day, I nearly put my hand on a coiled viper, I had not seen it so camouflaged as it was.

This is why the NYT censored thousands of my comments, but it does not want its readers to know it censors a higher idea of truth and civilization… So it proceeded to censor the following comment I sent more than 24 hours ago. But before I go on and show a picture of the New York Times below, hiding in dead leaves, let me suggest that good readers should not read the rest of this, they would be familiar with it:

Almost perfect camouflage of the Gabon viper (Bitis gabonica), resting on leaves in Zimbabwe, South Africa. Light colored “leaf” near the center is actually a head of this highly venomous, largest viper in Africa, which can reach a length of 2 meters and a weight of 20 kg (45 pounds). It is responsible for causing the most snakebite fatalities in Africa. It crosses dirt roads slow. A car passing on it will not kill it. One has to brake hard, to do so. Or so I was told by my father in Africa. Ah, yes, this is a metaphor for the NYT, the “WaPo”,and their ilk.

***

I have subscribed to the New York Times for more than 40 years. I have never sent a comment afflicted by vulgar language or incivility. However, my comments were not published thousands of times. This was not accidental. After I criticized the invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the part some opinion columnists (one is still a star of the NYT) and journalists  played in making the invasion a desired outcome, I was banned until there was a personal change at the top of NYT. Suddenly, my comments went through. At least, some of them.

Thus comments, as far as I can tell, are moderated for content. When the content of a comment does not fit some conventional standards the NYT adheres to, it gets blocked. 

I recognize that, recently, most of my comments are getting published, and I welcome this change.

I believe that one strength  of democracy is the generalization of debate. This is rendered possible by two Greek concepts which I will not name, although they were viewed as pillars of Greek (real) democracy. I will not do this, because the AI program may think that I am using some obscure incivilities. [The concepts are parrhesia: frankness of speech and isegoria: right to address the assemblies; NYT violates both on a daily basis, be it only by censoring my comments. If one uses sophisiticated concepts, NYT censors identify them with cuss words…

To improve the system the NYT should tell readers why comments were rejected, or use oversighted reader post moderation (publish, then flag bad stuff).

Facebook banned me for 30 days. I was told I had committed “racial hatred”, etc. It turned out that I had described historical facts about Nazism. FB had confused message and messenger. Facebook excused itself, profusely, rescinded the ban immediately, and never censored me again. [My only guiding light is to tell the truth…]

***

[I sent also the following comment to the NYT, duly censored in turn:]

I send a lot of comments which I view as deeply thought. As I pointed out in the past many of these comments never appear. 

Something even more troubling has happened: comments which I viewed as perfect (to speak like Trump, tongue in cheek), which were published. The comments tried hard to be cogent, had perfect high society English, and were civil. A few hours after publication… they were removed. “This comment is not available”. These were comments which were not replies on other comments and had no replies. So these comments of mine were not removed because of any of the reasons rolled out.  

[Some readers of the NYT have suggested that the staff of the NYT steals ideas from comments… That’s common academic practice, as when professors steal ideas from students… all the way to the Nobel Prize… Even worse, this practice suggests some plutocrats call the Times to suggest to remove the idea(s) from circulation. They took 24 hours to finally publish my idea of taxing big consumption borrowing by billionaires…]

Another disagreeable happenstance is the 24+ hours delayed comment. Just after it is mentioned on the worldwide web that a comment was not published, and reasons are speculated upon… It finally appears, long after anybody has stopped reading the article it was commenting upon.

I sincerely wish the NYT  improves further the commentariat. After all, the NYT has hundreds of minds thinking. The readership of the NYT, though, represents millions of minds: more thoughts are better than censored thoughts.

***

[In conclusion, I also sent this one, duly censored, like the others:]

I sent some polite and civil comments on this article on the humans making “tough calls on comments” at the New York Times. My aim was to help evolve a better debate platform at the New York Times. e is to evolve. My comments did not appear yet. 

A suggestion is to use back-censorship: comments flagged by readers, or staff could be removed, after the humans, not machines, made the tough call later… On the Wall Street Journal, comments are published without preliminary censorship, and it works. On the New York Times, a rejection is imposed first, and then perhaps lifted through a complicated process. First Google, or a machine provided by Google, inspects the comment… then humans make “the Tough Calls on Comments”. Why not give us readers the benefit of the doubt? Why not being presumed innocent, before punishment?

***

In perhaps related news Kristoff retired from the NYT (not from old age, but because he wants to become governor!… Perhaps disgusted by the Times? He was the NYT’s best journalist… I sent the following, and as usual, Kristoff published it immediately:

We will miss you in so many ways… including the fact you never rejected my comments! But we need intelligent, worldly, honest and common sensical, non-career politicians! Especially Oregon where there is too much fake progressivism. Fake progressivism is a case often of the perfect being an enemy of progress. This happens to such an extent that it is tempting to conclude that the hyper wealthy who finance fake progressivism know what they are doing… Actually some have explained this explicitly. So it is not going to be easy to become governor of Oregon, but let’s hope it works. Democracy, real democracy, demands that all minds can collaborate in the grand human adventure to sing and blossom with the better angels of our nature. And that requires global debate, as human beings knew for millions of years before the rise of civilization… global debate is fortunately possible again, thanks to modern technology… if said technology is not just in the hands of just a few individuals, families, or circles of power. So good luck, once again, to you, and thus to us… And thank you. There will be no replacement here, at the NYT… Hopefully some guest essays? A web site? For more debate?

Meanwhile, I would suggest Metabook. Metabook should be the name and wish for Facebook. No more just face value, and booking it, but going beyond books where only imagination can dwell. It should also be declared a public utility and nationalized, or at least regulated and nationalized the US way, as the energy company PG & E in California… Although the latter of course is a disaster: the company was forced into buying “Renewables”… while neglecting that basics, such as burying the lines (not doing so causes humongous fires…)

In his 1907 retirement speech, Joseph Pulitzer wrote up his credo for journalism. He was very clear about what made it a noble profession, one worth dedicating your life to: “Never lack sympathy with the poor.” Nowadays, the entire media is owned, one way or another, by the world’s wealthiest families. It will end up like “Dune”, an imperial world owned by great “houses”, if we do not put a timely stop to his nonsense. Meanwhile, the poor gets insulted by being told it’s racist and afflicted by “populism”. We The People suffer from “populism”! We are just “deplorable”! Hillary Clinton: “you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables”. The New York Times, by telling me my comments are “insulting”, or “insignificant” (latest insult!) tells me I am just unworthy, and basically unconscious. What next? Let’s recover our sanity, the New York Times wants to steal it! Want insults? Get some!

Repeat after me: New Pork Times, not New York Times! A camouflaged viper you have not seen is worse than one you can see clearly!

You want truth? Organize debate!

Patrice Ayme

 

A Smarter Suggestion To Tax Hyper Wealth: Tax Borrowed Money USed As Income For Consumption

October 26, 2021

Why not tax borrowing of the hyper wealthy, when it is used for consumption? Say a billionaire buys an Hawaiian island with borrowed money. Then have the tax code consider the borrowed money as income, and tax it like ordinary income… One could make an exception if the money is used for research, development or re-injected in the business. For example Elon Musk owns 48% of SpaceX. As long as all this potential capital is reinjected in SpaceX, no tax. If Musk borrowed to buy himself a palace somewhere, that borrowing would be taxed. The advantage of taxing luxury consumption debt is that extravagant borrowing is only for the very wealthy. There would be a natural cutoff, and the non-wealthy would not be affected. This avoids the pitfall of taxing unrealized capital gains, which is a very scary notion, and a slippery slope… Even for the poor, as a house can end up being worth a lot, even if the owner is poor. Larry Ellison of Oracle, did not get personally taxed, because he borrowed using his stock holdings as collateral. Then he bought the huge Hawaiian island of Lanai. He is not the only billionaire to buy himself an island. Gates and Branson already did this. During the COVID crisis, Branson blackmailed a number of governments to get billions to keep his companies going. He never considered selling his tax haven island. Billionaires understand leverage. It is time we progressives also do.

Patrice Ayme

[That was a comment to the New York Times, which sat on it the entire day, approving meanwhile hundreds of other (less significant and innovative) comments, before finally publishing it… Hoping nobody would read it? 

 

The Pinnacle List

Pledges Do Not A Climate Make… Especially When They Rest On Fake Graphs And Inexistent Technology.

October 26, 2021

At the Paris COP conference, Climate “Pledges” were made. Obstruction by the Obama White House insured that the accord would be weak, toothless, and insignificant. Countries “pledged” to reduce CO2 according to their own agendas. Their projections rested on non-existing technologies and unrealistic deployment thereof. Trump objected to the whole thing in part because it required rich countries to give 100 billions a years to poor countries. I objected because the whole thing was wishful thinking. In particular, many countries made fanciful claims of future CARBON CAPTURE on an industrial scale. Nobody knows how to do this commercially in the average case (although special geological situations work)… Nor is there any imaginable way to do it at an enormous scale, short of freezing CO2 from the air, using electricity from thermonuclear reactors…. Any anti-CO2 tech which creates more CO2 than it removes is counter-effective in my opinion (but not in that of “leaders”… consider the enormous electric car effort, while power generation is left in limbo…) 

Graphs are used to make optimistic declarations about the CO2 future emissions. They typically have unexplained inflection points, where the second derivatives of emissions do not just go from positive to negative, but do it with a discontinuity (a sharp angle requiring infinite force).

The silly inflections are pure wishful thinking, but typical of the projections of the institutions in obedience of the Western establishment. The picture above is… slightly modified from today’s New York Times (10/26/2021). NYT, following the official UN discourse, claims we are in the middle band…. Thanks to “Paris pledges”. However Pledges do not a climate make. Also this assumes two changes of the second derivative of climate emission in short order, that is two inflection points, thus, that great force are to be imminently applied, as if an asteroid had landed, smashing the human CO2 emitting industry… Extending the graph linearly from present emissions give a rise not of 4, but 7 (seven) Degrees Centigrade. This graph considers all CO2 emissions from PRIMARY ENERGY, cement, steel, production and land use, an overall CO2 production from human activity, which is around 60% higher… than at the time of the noisy (and obviously ineffectual, Kyoto Accord). In 2014 we were around 550 Gigatons of CO2, and we augment now at roughly 10%… each year. Only 40% of the CO2 goes in the atmosphere. 30% goes in the ocean, 30% in the ground… Both the ocean and the soil, now carbon sinks, will reverse into carbon producers, given enough warming…

So to claim we have passed an inflection point, with a sharp discontinuity and, or, will have another soon is wishful thinking, as usual.

Let’s look at those appearances and dispel them. The statement “humanity has started to bend the emissions curve” is wishful, and probably false: yes there has been a recent brutal decrease, caused by COVID, its strict (and useless, counterproductive) lockdowns, and a world recession.

BUT the reality is completely different, draconian, and very simple. The production of coal , oil and gas is at maximum, or close to it. And why not? The world population is still augmenting and more people want to enjoy energy. 84% of the world primary energy production is fossil fuels (and energy production is 72% of CO2 production).

Even Great Britain just opened a new coal mine (to make steel).

So the world economy will rebound with a vengeance, and that means more fossil fuel than ever. It’s not a few more wind mills and solar panels made in China which will change a thing. Amusingly, the graph of bending shows a dramatic inflection point, just ahead.

Aside from an asteroid strike, it’s hard to see what could cause a dramatic inflection in the emissions of CO2. It’s not as if a miraculous new energy source was around the corner. There is none. The pure electric solution (wind, solar, batteries) depends upon gigantic investments, around 5 trillion dollars a year, worldwide.

They compete for the same precious elements. Including polysilicon, 75% of which is made in China. It is not even clear that electric cars are a CO2 advantage at this point, when the whole life cycle of these cars is considered (they’re 700 kilograms heavier than average cars, causing accidents, require huge energy for production, burn fossil fuel electricity in California!)

As long as this lunacy persists, hard morrows to follow. China and Russia, correctly, do not bother to show up at the COP26 climate conference of the UN. China is, on the surface, the world’s top polluter. But that’s only appearance: in truth China produces massively for the US and Europe. So Chinese pollution is in great part Euro-American pollution physically translated to East Asia. And Russia is keeping Europe energetic. That’s a very polluting feat, as much of Russian production is in Siberia and the far north, in very energy demanding places…

So Europe and the USA are not very honest about the CO2 crisis and the climate calamity… And deliberately so, hence their dismissal by Russia and China. Morally speaking, it starts to look like the world upside down. The delusion continues. Meanwhile, we will need a lot of fossil fuels in the next decade, especially if we want to solve the CO2 crisis, because we have to Make Ecology Great Again (MEGA!), and that will require enormous investments, enormous Absolute Worth Energy (AWE)… except if somebody wants to organize a world war… Or another world lockdown, killing more people than it will save, as the ones we have been through just did….

Patrice Ayme

When Pain Teaches Wisdom: Mysterious Illnesses, etc.

October 24, 2021

I have had chronic illness myself, as a child, starting in Africa, long ago. For years. Never explained, although the Pasteur Institute in Dakar (!) at the time, looked at it. I slowly recovered, overall… So I know how devastating and isolating chronic illness can be… It’s isolating when the illness is mysterious, as was my case… Which started after accidentally drinking (Tropical Africa) river water…

Thus my heart felt condolences to all chronic sufferers and their families.

Mysterious chronic illness helps to become wiser, though… As the frailty, and incommunicability, of human existence is laid bare… plenty to meditate about. Little pleasures even more crucial, and how to confine the happiness of life into learning to love their blossoms.

It may be no accident that the most popular and arguably most effective presidents, FDR and JFK, suffered from chronic illnesses. But by suffering and learning to tame it, and learning to appreciate the little pleasures, the frailty of the human condition, they had plenty of perspective and time to appreciate how well life should be appreciated in full, and what, among the issues and emotions, were the most significant ones.

Pain is a teacher. We may do not like it, and in general we will hate it, but we learn from it as we cannot learn from anything else.

Human medicine should be more aware that health care is also psychological pain care: telling physiologically suffering patients that they imagine their physical pain should be viewed as abusive, bad medical practice.

There are medical experts, indeed, and we need them, of course. They do a fantastic job in their (tiny) areas of expertise. However, part of their training should be the humility of pathetically small knowledge facing the unknown ocean of unfathomable knowledge.

What’s the country with the most and best paid professional COVID relevant experts? The USA. What is the country with the largest official number of dead COVID patients? The USA. Correlation is not causation, but most often, especially if too blatant, intimation…

***

The success of the twenty vaccines spectacularly financed by Trump is something else entirely different, which has mostly to do with a combination of science, greed (in the good sense), private and public financing, for-profit adventurism, etc. Trump “gave” more than four billion dollars to Moderna alone. Moderna, the expert company for mRNA vaccination needed the cash, made the best vaccine and now Bin Biden wants to divulge Moderna tech to the world (!!!).

Those who decided to fund the companies or institutes (in the case of Russia and China). Private investors, Trump, Putin and xi have to be lauded, and recognized as expert… science funders. The European Union is to be vilified. That Trump financed European vaccines Europeans didn’t themselves finance is grotesque. Even more so Boris Johnson financing a French vaccine that neither France or the EU financed.

Moderna has the best COVID vaccine. It is triumph of mRNA vaccine tech, in particular, a tech launched in France in the 1990s, and which failed then… So this is expertise and expertise which worked beyond all expectations… But it has nothing to do with the psychological approach to mysterious illnesses of traditional doctors…

As mRNA tech should allow to transform human beings for at least one million man-made proteins… Many mysterious diseases are going to be elucidated soon. But this has nothing to do with traditional medicine and its all too frequent ill-justified arrogance. Notice also that daring financing by bold investors is even more crucial than “expertise”, because, in fundamental research, expertise is created… Not pre-existent.

There is also a more general context at play here: adventurism pays unexpected dividends, just as pain does, including the pain adventurism can bring… Not forgetting the pain some suffer from fear and jealousy when early biotech investors become billionaires because they gave decades of their lives, learning, studying and working mRNA and the like.

Patrice Ayme

P/S: The initial part of the essay above was a comment (unpublished) to the New York Times’ excellent work by ROSS DOUTHAT,

How I Became a Sick Person. Oct. 23, 2021

“The long-term form of Covid-19 has something in common with other forms of chronic illness — strange and varied symptoms, lasting debilitation, no certain treatment. But unlike other such conditions, which tend to creep up on society, long-haul Covid arrived suddenly, creating a large pool of sufferers in a short period of time and afflicting frontline medical workers and younger patients in large numbers.

This created a sense of immediacy and urgency… among a population — doctors, especially — that’s often skeptical of difficult patients and mystery illnesses.

But already with long Covid you can see the usual structure of chronic-illness controversies reasserting itself. Recent articles in The Atlantic and The New Yorker cover the emerging lines of debate, which pit patient advocates urgently seeking treatment against scientists following cautious research protocols…

Meanwhile, among friends naturally inclined to skepticism, I can see the initial sympathy inspired by long Covid giving way to the doubtfulness that hangs around chronic fatigue syndrome, or fibromyalgia, or the chronic form of Lyme disease…

I understand these ideas because for a long time, despite close relationships with people who suffered from chronic illness, I shared some of them. Most notably, I shared a common idea of what chronic illness is like — imagining a kind of Victorian fainting-couch experience, a hyperactive fixation on tingles and twinges, an exaggerated version of the fatigue that comes after you’ve stayed up with a newborn or the aches you feel after exercising for the first time in months.

Then I got sick myself.”

The rest of the story, very detailed, and although a cliffhanger, is pretty harrowing…

Rewilding Is A Necessity

October 23, 2021

Rewilding the planet Is A Necessity… for many reasons. The most important of these reasons cannot be seen by those indulging too much in our “normal life”… and that’s why said life, which is not really a life in full, as creation understood it, is abnormal, thus weak, impotent, and potentially destitute, as our state of mediocrity has revealed humanity incapable of dealing with the tsunami of messes it is creating for itself and the entire biosphere.

Part of the planet are been rewilded. US President Nixon signed in 1972 the Marine Mammal Protection Act… The result has been the reappearance of seals around US coasts. Around Ano Nuevo, a constant white shark patrol forces Northern Elephant seals to run the gauntlet. The waters are totally unswimmable… With hundreds of sharp, triangular teeth, and the ability to swim at 35 mph (56 km/h), great whites are frightening hunters. They can grow up more than 20 feet long (6 meters) and weigh more than 4,000 pounds. And those two tons of black and white muscle can become completely airborne, chasing a seal. Off the San Francisco Bay Area, in the Monterey-Farallon-Bodega “red triangle”, 300 giant sharks roam

So yes, there is a problem swimming off Cape Cod… Half a million seals are bringing more and more white sharks… People are getting killed, millions are terrorized… Read the New York Times very long piece, blaring in red capital letters:

FEAR ON CAPE COD AS SHARKS HUNT AGAIN

I would of course hate to be eaten by a shark, and I have seen sharks in the water, while I was swimming in said water, a few meters away… I was not scared out of my wits, because that was in Africa, and I was fully… armed (mechanical harpoon and sea combat knife; the reason for that impressive armament which some would declare unbecoming a philosopher is that I was spear fishing in a sea crammed with predators; those who claim one should be like Buddha, contemplating one’s navel, not hurting a seal are like Buddha himself, a privileged prince with servants, who never had to swim shark infested waters; and what these unwise people do not know, is that Buddha did not know the natural state of the planet… Full of sharks, crocodiles, lions, and snakes…)

Once I was bouldering in Africa, on volcanic rock, above the Atlantic Ocean. The largest shark I have ever seen, even among the sharks I have seen on video passed below. Weirdly it was beige. Otherwise it looked pretty much the shape of a white shark (which usually look black from above). Yes, does not seem to make much sense, but I was a child, it was long ago, and, without being terrified out of my wits, all my wits were very concentrated on not falling in the water. The shark looked like 6 meters long, a bit more than a meter wide. Around that general period of my life, I saw lions from all too close, in the wild… But I remember those episodes as not as terrifying as the shark from above. You see, a lion, like a bear, is a thinker. One can, in a sense, negotiate, express respect… but also confidence. Not so with a Moray Eel, or a shark…

However the time I sort of nearly died as a child was from a Portuguese Man Of War, the famous (Physalia physalis)…. which “has been known to occasionally kill humans“… The tropical Atlantic version is gigantic, its rainbow sail (and floater) is a full foot long, its tentacles can be thirty meter longs… The sting of nature beckons. I was nearly killed by wasps in California… and was actually reattacked by a number recently… Half of my legs swelled…. Even two weeks later the two stings I experienced hurt… It was still another species… California has many species of wasps…

So many misadventures… And I want them for everybody? Well, then everybody would acquire a more measured sense of reality… Reality as it is

***

So what to do with the increasing White Sharks populations? White Sharks around Cape Town, a place with plenty of seals, prevented people to swim. A White Shark tourist industry blossomed… Then the shark population collapsed. No more sharks. What happened? Two giant male Orcas had appeared, and playfully started to kill sharks, eating only their livers… Male Killer Whales can weigh up to ten tons…

Four Orcas creating a bow wave in the hope of washing off the ice floe a delicious Crab Seal. Killer Whales are that intelligent@ They could obviously be trained to do something about shark… In exchange for various human services such as health care, etc…

This gives an idea of what to do. Killer Whales (who could, but don’t kill humans), could be taught to help with the sharks… More generally:

We need to reintroduce the apex predators, teach ourselves nature. I have encountered lions, bears, black or brown, pumas, wolves… All respect humanity, they’ve that sort of culture. It’s taught by the parents. Results are not guaranteed, though: once a bear charged me in Yosemite (I was carrying chicken; he had attacked and raided 15 backpackers earlier… they had less interesting cargo…) A scuffle happened… Let me put it this way: bears don’t like stones (they know stones, and respect masters of stones)… That bear was dangerous: he disfigured a grandmother three weeks later. The park service killed it.

What to do? Create  a new profession: megafauna handler synchronizing humans and megafauna. The alpha animals should be tagged, tracked, warned and instructed… Say by firing at them stunt grenades or salt, and the like when they come too close to humans (the national park service has started to do this in Yellowstone). Besides tracking sharks, and giving alerts, drones could be used to drop stunt grenades on them if they come too close to people…

Besides racism, there is no reason to restrict dangerous predators to some places in the Arctic, Africa and Asia. Old megafauna should be genetically reengineered (there are such projects with Mammoths and Aurochs) and reintroduced throughout the West, where people would get reacquainted with nature, savage beauty and transcendental wisdom… 

Human minds evolved in the wild, over millions of years. 

Some say, we have to forget that, it’s not appropriate.

But we should say the opposite. 

Our minds cannot explore all their own dimensions, created by evolution, when they are not confronted with all that nature can bring. 

So it is a metaphysical problem. In our usual physics, of constrained bourgeois, our minds are deployed only partially. To spread their wings fully, our minds need to think as nature does. Very rigorously, but with joie de vivre.

Patrice Ayme

This is the last photo of the Barbary Lion in the wild. It was a larger species than the present African lions. Lions were found throughout Africa, Asia and America. They were eliminated by human predation. Modern technology could institute a reasonable coexistence of humans and lions in giant parks…. By training the lions and tracking them. {The added psychedelics is a personal touch…]

P/S: I wrote a similar essay in 2013: REWILDING US… Out there in nature, to survive a human cannot be like a sheep. Rewilding us is then a rampart against dictatorship, and the plutocratic mindset…. The end of that essay alludes to the capitulation of Athens to the Macedonian tyrant Antipater, Aristotle’s closest mind…

Lions don’t accept to live on their knees. When abominable forces from the giant Persian theocratic plutocracy put the tiny Athenian democracy in desperate military situations, Athenians fought like lions. And democracy won.

Yet, 150 years later, when fascist, plutocratic, but apparently not as abominable, Macedonian forces put Athens in a difficult situation, Athenians surrendered. They did not fight like lions. Democracy would not come back to Athens for 23 centuries (and only thanks to the European Union).

We will not defeat plutocracy if we do not rewild ourselves. First. Let there be lions.

Duchess of Cambridge Propagandizes Drug Addiction, Plutocracy. Versus Chinese Policy…

October 21, 2021

Duchess of Cambridge: says Addiction is not a choice and none of us is immune… Looking at her, one can see why…

Why did she say something that stupid? Besides the obvious hint that she is not “immune” herself?

Because Cambridge Duchess knows the establishment made it so that drugs are readily available for a substantial portion of the population? Just to know the Anglosphere addiction context here, Barack Obama admitted he was using cocaine in his memoirs… Then he got elected president, presumably because it’s so incredibly “cool” to be led by a drug addict. This election of the addict in chief happened in a country where having a rock cocaine pipe in one’s pocket… without any drug in it, or on one’s person, can send a low life to prison forever (I know a personal case, as related somewhere else in my writings in ZZZZ… XXXX got the guy out, thanks to intervention by eminently YYYY… [1])   . Drugs are another dimension of the class wars. In a way, Cambridge is propagandizing for them, that’s the bait. Then, after the low lives have swallowed the bait… they can be arrested. Meanwhile Cambridge can be on meth all day long, she looks like it, and she will be OK, she may even be elected to something even more honorable…

Chris Snuggs correctly commented:

Duchess of Cambridge: Addiction is not a choice and none of us is immune.”

Sorry, but that is BS.

Unless mentally ill or forcibly coerced in some way, humans have free will. 

Everyone knows what addiction is and how to avoid it.

If people get addicted they have chosen to do so.

I avoid drug addiction by not taking drugs, including nicotine.

I avoid alcoholism by drinking in moderation. George Best did the opposite, even when he got a new liver.

Many people ARE immune because they CHOOSE not to do something that will probably lead to addiction. 

The princess is simply making excuses for people with no self-discipline. It is the pathetic modern trend to remove blame from individuals for ANYTHING. Obesity is for the vast majority not a disease, but a combination of greed, lack of self-discipline and a lack of respect for both oneself and for others. 

“I’m a drug-addict, but it’s not my fault.” As I said, BS.

She’s a lovely lass, but it serves nobody to avoid the truth. I would like her to have said: “I want to help people out of the mess they’ve got themselves info.”

***

Whenever one of the celebrities who aspire to govern our minds or, more exactly those of their voters, taxpayers and clients, express themselves with an apparently simple discourse, one has to go meta and find out how they really are influencing people… Indeed when people express themselves they do not just convey a digital discourse, a set of words in a few sentences, supposed to program us… More importantly, celebrities convey emotion(s). And those emotions are more important than the simple direct discourses, because emotions program us more deeply

The powers that be, the oligarchs who pay, employ, finance, and mold the politicians, want first of all make our emotions fully synchronous with their demented rule. They want to turn us into bleating sheeple, as the Roman dictator, plutocrat Augustus, and his hellish successors succeeded to….

Duchess of Cambridge: Addiction is not a choice and none of us is immune.

→ Duchess of Cambridge: the establishment is not a choice and none of us is immune.

→ Duchess of Cambridge: plutocracy is not a choice and none of us is immune.

→ Duchess of Cambridge: fate is not a choice and none of us is immune.

So what the future queen is saying is that things are what they are and our personal free will can’t change them.

Kate Middleton is a propagandist of what the British monarchy symbolizes: the established order, the established plutocratic order. Meantime, in the most progressing country, the People Republic Of China… This increasingly oligarchic situation, with decreasing People’s input, is taken into account. China does not want to be emotionally led by Kate Middleton and her ilk (Soros, Gates, Buffet, Bezos, Arnault, and the countless anonymous mid-level plutocrats who own most things…). So China, led by Xi, has been doing something about it…. It is viewed with alarm in world’s plutocratic circles, but it may well work… Next…

Patrice Ayme

As an addict myself, me the Duchess is eminently qualified to defend addicts… Just looking at her, the future queen, a walking skeleton, mother of three, one can see Kate Middleton is a drug addict. When addicts preach to addicts… “Addiction is not a choice,” said the 39-year-old, as quoted by People magazine. “No one chooses to become an addict. But it can happen to any one of us. None of us are immune. It is all too rarely discussed as a serious mental health condition and seldom do we take the time to uncover and fully understand its fundamental root causes.

[1] A lawyer requested removal (“redaction”) of some explicit references in the essay. Clemencies cannot be explicited, I was told. .

Colin Powell In Memoriam Of What Not To Do

October 19, 2021

Much admired top general and invasive Secretary of State Colin Powell just died of COVID at age 84…

Some of the departed evoke the need for good riddance of some behaviors. 

Integrity is a word often mentioned in connection with four star general Colin Powell. Born in New York to “colored” US immigrants, Powell rose to chief of staff of the Pentagon and Reagan national Security adviser, supervising thus the invasion of Panama and the attack on the Iraqi army occupying Koweit.

Koweit is an Emirate which occupies most of the Meopotamian waterfront (when one occupies an occupier, is one occupying?) The US, through its ambassador, did a bait and switch on Koweit, telling Saddam Hussein first that he could do whatever it wanted, and then turning around and acting all scandalized… Hussein had been used earlier as an attack dog against Iran, with US, British, French and German support… Hussein should have taken more lessons in backstabbing by studying what happened with many fascist regimes, once supported by the West….

Powell was a Black Life who mattered in the blackest way.He helped cover up the My Lai massacre in Vietnam, when a village and its inhabitants were destroyed for no reason. Only decades later Powell admitted it was a mistake. 

Powell never once spoke out against his own participation in Iran-Contra exchange of weapons for the Iranian Islamist state (illegel), using the money to pay for a civil war in Nicaragua… under order of Reagan, with the complicity of an Arkansas airstrip overviewed by Bill Clinton… the world of plutocracy is small…

Powell deserves eternal shame for presenting obviously bogus chemical and biological warfare research trucks cartoons at the United Nations, to try to justify a war of aggression against Iraq. Few believe the ridiculous cartoons, but Powell, Bush and company proceeded nevertheless, a crime against humanity. He admitted his error years later, when everybody had come to realize what he had done….. 

In February 2003 the then Secretary of State Colin Powell gave a presentation before the United Nations showing a computer generated view of what the Iraqi biological laboratories looked like. Powel claimed that Iraq had as many as 18 mobile facilities for making anthrax and botulinum toxin. “They can produce enough dry, biological agents in a single month to kill thousands upon thousands of people.” It was all sheer invention.Following the invasion of Iraq two trailers were found and initially described as the alleged mobile labs by the Bush administration and its servile media. However:

Iraqi mobile labs nothing to do with germ warfare, report finds

Powell’s ridiculous lying cartoons presented at the United Nations by Powell to try to justify invading Iraq. France threatened to veto an explicit war authorization, so the US went to war because of the drawing above… By alleging the presence of biological weapons of mass destruction. As UN inspectors on the ground knew there were no such biological research building, Powell asserted the research and production was made in 18 trucks as those above…

The Pentagon produced a secret report in 2003 entitled Final Technical Engineering Exploitation Report on Iraqi Suspected Biological Weapons-Associated Trailers that found that the trailers were impractical for biological agent production and almost certainly designed and built for the generation of hydrogen. It had become obvious to Britain earlier, and hit the media there four months after the invasion.  

Nice and otherwise great people can do dastardly things. That does not excuse them, nor should it make common folks admire them… 

Even and especially when the dastardly deed is a crime against humanity and motivated by increasing the price of oil… to make US fracking profitable… That well well have been the main motivation to invade Iraq, something not noticed by the gullible and easily railroaded… In any case, increasing the price of oil durably, to roughly double what it is now, was the durable consequence of the invasion of Iraq, and gave birth to the entire fracking industry in the US… making the US the world’s most important fossil fuel producer.  

People have to learn to raise their moral standards. Yes, Powell’s skin was brown. But that should not make him a good person, and an object of admiration… Quite the opposite. Powell’s policies were massive excrements onto the world, a brown diarrhea of greed. There is the possibility that it is not just his smart lack of probity which led to his beautiful career, but also that the very color of his skin, brown, so admired, and his origins, so modest, were actually instrumentalized, a cover-up. If it is the brown guy who orders it, the white masters behind the policy hide in heavens, above the white clouds…

Flushing the excrement of the plutocracy onto the planet to make frackers, their financiers and their ilk so wealthy they can buy the world, and thus make for good press for their servant boys, is one more example of corruption for history to laugh at…..

Patrice Ayme

The Destruction From Heavens Of Sodom and Gomorrah Really Happened: Impacts No Laughing Matter

October 18, 2021

Many people will laugh about cosmic bolides impacting…As they believe it happened only to dinosaurs. But impacts occur probably much more frequently than was generally assumed previously… Because we keep on discovering new impacts. Now we have a Sodom and Gomorrah impact. It was bad luck that a bolide (or one in two pieces) hit two cities at a time when there were so few cities… But now there are more cities, and we know that, in the Twentieth Century, there were two impacts on continents, one in Siberia: Tunguska; incontrovertible evidence; it flattened 830 square miles, 2150 square kilometers, of Siberian forest… and one in the Amazon (many witnesses, but no scientific expedition to document it, when Tunguska got three in the 1920s, and more since)… If one multiplies by three, considering the oceans, one gets say five Tunguska per century…  This estimate of mine is 15 times higher than the present, 2020 conventional academic one (one Tunguska every 300 years).

Here is what a witness of Tunguska saw: “Suddenly in the north sky… the sky was split in two, and high above the forest the whole northern part of the sky appeared covered with fire… At that moment there was a bang in the sky and a mighty crash… The crash was followed by a noise like stones falling from the sky, or of guns firing. The earth trembled.” The impact was followed by abnormal skies with high level clouds which enabled people to read at night, etc…

From Nature, September 20, 2021: “A Tunguska sized airburst destroyed Tall el-Hammam a Middle Bronze Age city in the Jordan Valley near the Dead Sea“. Abstract:

We present evidence that in ~ 1650 BCE (~ 3600 years ago), a cosmic airburst destroyed Tall el-Hammam, a Middle-Bronze-Age city in the southern Jordan Valley northeast of the Dead Sea. The proposed airburst was larger than the 1908 explosion over Tunguska, Russia, where a ~ 50-m-wide bolide detonated with ~ 1000× more energy than the Hiroshima atomic bomb. A city-wide ~ 1.5-m-thick carbon-and-ash-rich destruction layer contains peak concentrations of shocked quartz (~ 5–10 GPa); melted pottery and mudbricks; diamond-like carbon; soot; Fe- and Si-rich spherules; CaCO3 spherules from melted plaster; and melted platinum, iridium, nickel, gold, silver, zircon, chromite, and quartz. Heating experiments indicate temperatures exceeded 2000 °C. Amid city-side devastation, the airburst demolished 12+ m of the 4-to-5-story palace complex and the massive 4-m-thick mudbrick rampart, while causing extreme disarticulation and skeletal fragmentation in nearby humans. An airburst-related influx of salt (~ 4 wt.%) produced hypersalinity, inhibited agriculture, and caused a ~ 300–600-year-long abandonment of ~ 120 regional settlements within a > 25-km radius. Tall el-Hammam may be the second oldest city/town destroyed by a cosmic airburst/impact, after Abu Hureyra, Syria, and possibly the earliest site with an oral tradition that was written down (Genesis). Tunguska-scale airbursts can devastate entire cities/regions and thus, pose a severe modern-day hazard.

Following that an extremely long and detailed article, using many different scientific approaches, from 30 academic authors… Some Biblical scholars are upset… Apparently because divine mystery has become all too real… The city was more than 100 acres in area…

***

Sodom and Gomorrah were two biblical cities allegedly destroyed by God for their wickedness. It is the same general concept as in the Genesis flood narrative: God’s anger provoked by human sin, great mayhem ensues. Sodom and Gomorrah are mentioned frequently in the prophets and the New Testament as symbols of human wickedness and divine retribution, and were subsequently adopted into the Quran.(Book of Genesis, chapter 19, verses 1-28)

the sun had risen over the land. 24 Then the Lord rained down burning sulfur on Sodom and Gomorrah—from the Lord out of the heavens. 25 Thus he overthrew those cities and the entire plain, destroying all those living in the cities—and also the vegetation in the land… 27 Early the next morning Abraham got up and returned to the place where he had stood before the Lord. 28 He looked down toward Sodom and Gomorrah, toward all the land of the plain, and he saw dense smoke rising from the land, like smoke from a furnace. 

Recent excavations have produced shocked quartz north east of the Dead Sea, as only impacting bolides can produce. In ~ 1650 BCE (~ 3600 years ago), a cosmic airburst destroyed Tall el-Hammam, a Middle-Bronze-Age city in the southern Jordan Valley northeast of the Dead Sea. The proposed airburst was larger than the 1908 explosion over Tunguska, Russia, where a ~ 50-m-wide bolide detonated with ~ 1000 times more energy than the Hiroshima atomic bomb. This means an explosion of at least 20 megatons of TNT.

As it is, the asteroid Bennu has 1/750 chance of impacting Earth in the next two centuries, in the latest, 2021 estimate. (Bennu was visited by NASA, and material from it is coming back.) An impact from Bennu around Washington would devastate the entire Eastern seaboard of the USA… And Bennu is small, 400 meters across…

It is estimated in 2020 that there are about 1,000 Earth-crossing asteroids larger than 1 km (0.6 mile). Asteroids in inner solar system planet-crossing orbits move with variable orbits before eventually colliding with a planet or being ejected from the solar system after grazing a planet. Any collision with one of those would destroy a continent. 

Asteroid 99942 Apophis will approach Earth so closely (31,000 kilometers) in 2029 that it will get under the orbit of the Earth’s geostationary satellites(36,000 kms). What happens if it collides with a geostationary satellite? It will move across the sky at 42 degrees an hour, roughly at 7 kilometers per second. Its impact would release 1,200 Megatons. Apophis is also very elongated, and may be made of two objects, and since it comes close to the Roche limit (at 18,000 kms), it could perhaps split in two (depending upon a number of imaginable factors)…

There are more mysteries out there. In the Sixth Century, besides the “Justinian” Plague, there was some mysterious catastrophe which impacted the climate severely, worldwide. Whether that was an impact or volcanism is up in the air

This all reminds us that we do not just conquer space because it is out there, or because it is the final frontier. It is also because dangers lurk out there… and down here. The probability that a comet comes out of nowhere and crashes into Earth exists. It happened to Jupiter a few years ago…..

But danger also exists down here, especially now that the Earth has become tiny relative to our increasing powers. We need to dilute our increasing human powers by extending the volume in which they are exerted, thus the human empire. It is not a choice, it is the best we can do, the best we must do, a mitigation.

Patrice Ayme


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in truth, only atoms and the void

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Omnes vulnerant, ultima necat

GrrrGraphics on WordPress

www.grrrgraphics.com

Skulls in the Stars

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because all (Western) philosophy consists of a series of footnotes to Plato

Patrice Ayme's Thoughts

Striving For Ever Better Thinking. Humanism Is Intelligence Unleashed. From Intelligence All Ways, Instincts & Values Flow, Even Happiness. History and Science Teach Us Not Just Humility, But Power, Smarts, And The Ways We Should Embrace. Naturam Primum Cognoscere Rerum

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Dogs are animals of integrity. We have much to learn from them.

ianmillerblog

Smile! You’re at the best WordPress.com site ever

Defense Issues

Military and general security

RobertLovesPi.net

Polyhedra, tessellations, and more.

How to Be a Stoic

an evolving guide to practical Stoicism for the 21st century

Rise, Republic, Plutocracy, Degeneracy, Fall And Transmutation Of Rome

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SoundEagle 🦅ೋღஜஇ

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Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Patterns of Meaning

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in truth, only atoms and the void

West Hunter

Omnes vulnerant, ultima necat

GrrrGraphics on WordPress

www.grrrgraphics.com

Skulls in the Stars

The intersection of physics, optics, history and pulp fiction

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because all (Western) philosophy consists of a series of footnotes to Plato

Patrice Ayme's Thoughts

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Dogs are animals of integrity. We have much to learn from them.

ianmillerblog

Smile! You’re at the best WordPress.com site ever

Defense Issues

Military and general security

RobertLovesPi.net

Polyhedra, tessellations, and more.

How to Be a Stoic

an evolving guide to practical Stoicism for the 21st century