Archive for the ‘philosophy’ Category

Proof Of NO LOCAL Hidden Variables From Magnets

November 10, 2022

Abstract: Looked at it the right way, the Stern Gerlach experiment with three consecutive magnets oriented various ways, show that there can’t be LOCAL hidden variables. No need, to exhibit nonlocality, for the precise, but obscure logic of the Bell Inequality. The argument here is less mathematically precise, but more intuitive.

***

Stern-Gerlach Magnets (SGM) reveal an aspect of the Quantum, namely the quantization of (some sort of) angular momentum. SGM launched in 1922 the saga of Quantum Spin (it turns out to be connected to deep pure geometry which had been developed independently by Élie Cartan, a decade earlier). Drive an electron, or (appropriate) atomic beam through a SGM, and one will get two dots, one up, one down. Whatever the axis of the SGM [1]. (The SGM is just a magnetic field with a specific linear direction.) 

That means, at the emotional level that, at the smallest scale, spin, the electronic (sort of) angular momentum, or the orbital (sort of) angular momentum, reduce to UP and DOWN. First surprise. (This is actually the case of Spin 1/2, the simplest, such as for an electron; we are trying to learn the most from the simplest case.)

Say the first SGM is vertical (magnetic field along “z axis”) and a second SGM is horizontal (mag field along “x axis”). Call them respectively SGMV and SGMH. So SGMH produces LEFT-RIGHT beams. Put SGMH across the UP beam coming out of SGMV. One could call that beam SGMV (UP). Once goes through SGMH, one will get 50-50 LEFT-RIGHT. No surprise there.

Now say one selects the RIGHT beam coming out SGMH. Call that beam SGMH (UP; RIGHT)… because first the beam went up, then the beam went right.  

Naively one would expect, from classical mechanics, that SGMH (UP; RIGHT) to have kept a memory of its initial source as SGMV(UP). 

That would be to assume that beam SGMV (UP) and its descendant SGMH (UP;  RIGHT) to have kept some memory, in other words that some that the beams through the first SGMV and then the second SGM to harbor some LOCAL HIDDEN VARIABLES.

But that’s not the case. 

Indeed, please run SGMH (UP; RIGHT) into a second SGMV (that is a Stern Gerlach Magnet parallel to the first magnet SGMV… Call that second vertical Stern Gerlach Magnet SGMV2 One gets fifty-fifty UP and DOWN coming out of SGMV2. It is as if the initial Stern Gerlach, SGMV, never happened. (This set-up is presented in Feynman Lectures on Physics III, Chapter 6, Spin 1/2)

So if there were local hidden variables carried after SGMV that is in the beam SGMV (UP), they got somehow completely eradicated by getting into the beam SGMH (RIGHT).

So these proposed local hidden variables do not stay hidden inside the “particle”: an outside agent can erase them…. Thus those putative local hidden variables aren’t really “local” anymore: the environment impacts them, outside of the particle, and drastically so, just as the potential impacts the phase of an electron in the Bohm-Aharonov experiment… non locally.

***

One can rerun the experiment, by using both beams SGMH (RIGHT) and SGMH (RIGHT), mixing them up. Then it turns out that SGMV2 deflects ONLY UP. So simply going through magnet SGMH, WITHOUT selecting a beam (either SGMH(LEFT) or SMGH (RIGHT)) doesn’t do anything: a collapsing of the Quantum space available to the Quantum wave, selecting either left or right space, is what does something.

Conventional Quantum Physics, newish, path integral version, phrases this by saying one can’t say which path has been followed [2] to keep the information SGV UP or SGV DOWN.  Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum (CIQ) simply says that selecting beam SGMH (RIGHT) is a measurement thus collapses the wave function… SQPR says roughly the same thing.

In any case, this eradication of the influence of SGMH on the “particle” by just keeping open the OTHER beam, which the putative local hidden variable “particle” is by definition NOT taking, is itself a NONLOCAL effect, thus once again demolishing the “LOCAL Hidden Variable” concept. (One could say that one beam is entangled with the other…)

The advantage of this conceptual approach is that it exhibits directly the nonlocality… without hermetic complications [3]. It also shows the interest of a more philosophical rather than purely formalistic approach to physics.

Patrice Ayme
***

[1] Wolfgang Pauli in 1924 was the first to propose a doubling of the number of available electron states due to a two-valued non-classical “hidden rotation“. In 1925, George Uhlenbeck and Samuel Goudsmit suggested the simple physical interpretation for spin of a particle spinning around its own axis… But clearly that doesn’t fit what is observed. Pauli built a mathematical machinery which reflected the observed GSM behavior. It turned out to be a particular case of deep mathematical work from the French mathematician Élie Cartan who was born and initially educated in the small Alpine coal mining village of La Mure, and rose through merit in the republican educational system. It’s a bit like taking the square root of space. I don’t understand it, neither did the extremely famous mathematician Atiyah…

It is easy to be blinded by the math. But actually the math describes an observed physical behavior. Now this behavior may arise from deeper geometrical reason 

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[2] In SQPR, the “particles” are preceded by the linear guiding waves. Blocking some of them triggers “collapse”. By selecting SGMH (RIGHT) one clearly collapses the linear guidance.

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[3] Stern Gerlach Magnets also directly illustrates Spin, as did in the first few lines above (magnetic field —> two dots!) The Pauli machinery is often how Spin is introduced in Quantum Physics courses, but that, philososophically is confusing the formalism derived from what is observed with the observation itself.

Putin Propagandists Are Criminal Against Humanity, Block Them!

October 17, 2022

Example of assertion made publicly against yours truly (by DK):

A few examples of assertions made publicly against yours truly (by DK), a little bit of anti-Patrice hatred, while feeling the love for Putin. That was published, against me, on Facebook, for all to see. : “You refuse to recognize the suffering of the people in eastern Ukraine, now western Russia. You refuse to recognize truth. My inescapable conclusion: You are a Nazi. You should get some nostalgia out of this. The Bandera followers helped the German Nazis do this… Woke madness is not peaceful or productive. It’s pure stupidity. Much of the war is about Russia being mostly straight. Putin is not against gays, except when they try to influence children… Your statements are hysteria. Your hatred is in common with the Nazis in Ukraine, and you don’t have a problem with that. You shame yourself.”

The only Nazis in Ukraine are of course the thugs in Putin’s invasion force… Multiple commissions of the United Nations point to that conclusion. 

The sort of hateful nonsense directed towards me is published, quite frequently… My feelings are not hurt, I don’t feel bad at all. Quite the opposite, rather amused. I am happy to see that Putin’s own deranged servants feel that it is so important to insult me. My own family’s anti-Nazi credentials are impeccable. More than 100 Jews saved; all the family, at huge risks, fought the Nazis, in uniform of or not.

But this sort of insult, calling those who oppose the tyrant Putin “Nazis” can affect those who are weaker in culture, knowledge, history and temparement. They may believe it is smart, as Elon Musk proposed, to give Putin whatever he wants to appease him. Anybody who knows a bit of history knows one doesn’t feed an angry bear with one’s bare hands.

The likes of oligarch Elon Musk, who have not studied the situation on their own and depend, unwittingly, upon Putin’s propaganda to assess it, are vulnerable. All the more when they view themselves for geniuses. In turn, their learned arrogance caused by their own success at dominating people, makes them into dangerous propagators of oligarchic lies! (…and, to boot, Musk was financed by Obama, himself a Putin partisan, de facto, if not de jure… Obama plotted with Putin and refused to help Ukraine in 2014… differently from Trump and Biden) 

This is a serious matter, this vulnerability of the mentally weak. The situation with Putin is incredibly bad, potentially way worse than the worse Hitler ever planned. Indeed, although Hitler threatened the Jews with terrible consequences for the ludicrous reason that Hitler falsely accused the Jews to have caused a World War… before, armed with those anti-factual lies, sending 6 millions of them to gas chambers…

Even though Hitler was a barely conceivable horror, Hitler never threatened all of humanity with terrible consequences. Putin did threaten humanity with extinction, making him, arguably, worse than Hitler, and worse than any preceding tyrant.

All this is rendered possible, at least in Putin’s deranged mind, by horrible, 100% misdirected insults throughout the Internet against individuals who, as yours truly try to tell the truth. That, in turn, has a chilling effect on the truth.

A famous blogger in Australia, with millions of followers, paid by Putin several times wrote publicly to me, and I quote:”Are you out of your fucking mind?” or:”What the fuck is wrong with you?” She published daily extensive, well crafted pieces prepared by Putin propagandists. She has a devoted public. 

Such people are agents of a criminal against humanity (see below) and should be put out of commission. 

Putin attacked and invaded Ukraine (starting 8 years ago). That’s a war crime. Eight years ago the US president who implicitly presented himself as a friend of Putin, did nothing. He was not experienced enough, nor correctly educated (all he did in high school was dope) , little educated, and a self-described “navigator” (so no principles besides self-advancement). His tow successors, Trump and Biden did send weapons to Ukraine. Trump sent enough to stop Putin. However, after Biden came to power, the Democratic Congress stalled a Javelin anti-tank missile sale to Ukraine scheduled under Trump. At that point, over summer, Putin discreetly made it so that Europe, in particular Germany, could not store enough natural gas for the following winter. In other words, there is thus implied proof that Putin intended to invade the rest of Ukraine the following winter. Then Putin wrote a 5,000 words historically biased essay which eradicated Ukraine from history and made Kremlin Russia god, asserting it had the right to recover all its lost territories.

At that point, cherry on the cake, Biden shamefully dropped Afghan women in the maws of the Taliban, leaving behind 90 billion dollars of US equipment (so now there is such a thing as a Taliban air force). Hence, Biden projected abject, senile weakness.

Putin knew very well that the Europeans had begged Biden not to pull out of Bagram Air Force base, as that condemned the Afghan air force to not being able to repair its planes, hence, as the Afghan army couldn’t do without the air force, Afghanistan would fall to the savages. Europeans proposed to leave 10,000 soldiers in Afghanistan, and Bagram was the safest base of the US military, worldwide. However, like a senile old fool, Biden persisted, basically saying that it was better to lose a war than to go on with it. 

The autocrat in the Kremlin, self assured but not very smart, swallowed the whole thing, bait, hook, line, sinker and even the boat. 

So Putin attacked, but then it turned out that the Ukrainians, who had accomplished remarkable feats of war when Putin attacked them in 2014, and nobody would help them, repeated the performance. But this time the Ukrainians had thousands of Western rockets, soon to turn into more than seventeen thousands. 

Putin propaganda presented by Putinophiles as truth claims: if you talk Russian in Ukraine, you are executed. However many top Ukrainian officials, president, defense minister, etc, are native Russian speakers, and use their Russian… to address Russians! Presidents and Prime Minister are Jewish, Putin claims they are Nazis. And so on: in Putin’s world what is true is false and what’s false is true!

 

Giant Poster of Putin propaganda in Crimea after he invaded it, and organized a sham referendum. The title reads: “On March 16, we choose”…. Either a NAZI Crimea, on the left, “or “OR” (the 3 letters in between) Russian Crimea….

Putin, believing his own propaganda, as autocratic regimes always do, because they can’t be told any better, suddenly found himself facing not just Ukraine, but NATO and 50 democracies. Putin had thought that his propaganda and financing giant elite capture operations and pernicious media operations such as RT, Russia Today, would paralyze enough his adversaries for these massive weapon transfers not to happen.

Fortunately, the US and Europe had finally seen that Putin was Hitler, just worse, because Putin has 6,200 nukes. 

Invading Ukraine was a war crime, so is targeting and attacking pure civilian infrastructure (collateral damage is not a war crime, targeting civilian infrastructure either civil services or facilities, is a war crime). There is plenty of evidence of crimes against humanity committed by Putin’s Orcs (Orkhas is a term that was used a millenium before the Lord of The Rings, to qualify the horrendous Hungarian raiders into Europe, all the way to France…. said raids finished when the Hungarian army was annihilated by Otto I, Roman emperor, at the battle of Lechfeld, in 956 CE, over three days).

At least 7,343 children have been deported to Russia and another 236 are still missing since the start of its invasion of Ukraine on February 24, said Ukraine’s Office of the Ombudsman in September 2022. Russia has forcibly deported more than 1.6 million Ukrainians….

Russian troops have raped and tortured children in Ukraine, carried out a “large number” of executions and committed other war crimes, according to a United Nations investigation by legal experts.

Set up by the U.N. to probe the conduct of the war on both sides, the Independent International Commission of Inquiry reported its chilling findings in Geneva, describing a long list of abuses and atrocities. “Based on the evidence gathered by the commission, it has concluded that war crimes have been committed in Ukraine,” Erik Mose, the chairman of the three-member commission, told the U.N. Human Rights Council. War crimes, and plenty of them, thousands. Inquiries are pursued to find out the chain of command. One commander In Buch was found to have ordered war crimes in Izium, nearly 1,000 kilometers away. Was he himself under orders?

Putin’s officials are not even as smart as Hitler’s Nazis, Franco’s fascists or the Argentinian Junta: so used are Putin’s goons to commit crimes against humanity, that they have widely advertized their kidnapping and “adoptions” of Ukrainian children. That is one activity qualified of “GENOCIDE” by the United Nations [1].

I am totally against censorship of tumultuous thoughts. But censoring criminals against humanity and their agents is not censorship, it’s survival. The survival of humanity. Sometimes, to survive, one has to kill. Killing media access to Putin’s agents is only prudent.

At this point all we need is to destroy the enemies of humanity. Their propaganda is a distraction and itself a crime against reality. They should be blocked. In World War One, the erratic aristocrat Bertrand Russell was sent in prison for suggesting that Europe should be given to Germany, in the name of peace. Putting such a vile emitter out of the power of glowing with lies was an excellent decision. The nuclear Armageddon Putin threatened us all with is worse than the Kaiser’s worst… and we should act accordingly.

The USA should follow Europe in banning Putin’s right to speak… And Europe and the US should insist at the UN that the ban be enforced worldwide. Also, it took around ten days to expell Russia from the League of Nations when, allied with Hitler as the Kremlin was, it invaded Finland, in November 1939. Why is it taking so long to start a procedure to expell Russia?

Patrice Ayme

***

As the Institute For the Study of War observed October 15, 2022: 

Russia continues to conduct massive, forced deportations of Ukrainians that likely amount to a deliberate ethnic cleansing campaign in addition to apparent violations of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. Russian Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin stated on October 14 that “several thousand” children from Kherson Oblast are “already in other regions of Russia, resting in rest homes and children’s camps.”[1] As ISW has previously reported, Russian authorities openly admitted to placing children from occupied areas of Ukraine up for adoption with Russian families in a manner that may constitute a violation of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.[2]

Russian authorities may additionally be engaged in a wider campaign of ethnic cleansing by depopulating Ukrainian territory through deportations and repopulating Ukrainian cities with imported Russian citizens. Ethnic cleansing has not in itself been specified as a crime under international law but has been defined by the United Nations Commission of Experts on violations of humanitarian law committed on the territory of the former Yugoslavia as “rendering an area ethnically homogeneous by using force or intimidation to remove persons of given groups from the area” and “a purposeful policy designed by one ethnic or religious group to remove by violent and terror-inspiring means the civilian population of another ethnic or religious group from certain geographic areas.”[3] According to the UN definition, ethnic cleansing may be carried out by forcible removal, among other methods.[4] These definitions of ethnic cleansing campaigns are consistent with reports of the forcible deportation and adoption of Ukrainian children, as well as reports by Ukrainian sources that reconstruction projects in Mariupol are intended to house “tens of thousands of Russians” who will move to Mariupol.[5]

https://www.understandingwar.org/backgrounder/russian-offensive-campaign-assessment-october-15

Nukes And Nuts: Putin And The Tyrannical Trio: Socrates, Plato, Aristotle. How Those Three Helped Bring Forth Nuclear Tyranny.  

February 22, 2022

Aristotle was at the core of a handful of extremely close friends who cratered Athenian and Greek democracies: Alexander, Antipater, Craterus (!) Those guys hunted lions in the nude. Aristotle was the core, because he was the teacher. Aristotle played the exact same role with a handful of young or hyper powerful Macedonian oligarchs as Socrates did with a few Athenian golden youths who ended as Athens’ dictators.

Aristotle’s core position came from his dad, who was Philippe of Macedonia’s doctor.

When one is the most trusted friend of an absolute, most famous king, Philippe, and teacher of a world conqueror, Alexander, no wonder one would recommend, as Aristotle did, monarchy as the best government. Worse: Aristotle could have fought for democracy, instead he fought against it, and Demosthenes in particular.

One should suspect that Aristotle’s hatred of democracy penetrates much of his writings in sociology, psychology, politics, ethics…

One should not approve of the idea that all philosophy is made of appendages to Plato. On the face of it, Plato understood nothing to plutocracy, he sounded worse than Putin himself:

Socrates, Plato and Aristotle prospered under democracy, interpreting their freedom as the right to kill it in the guise of free speech.

For example, well before Plato’s birth, Aspasia, arguably the greatest philosopher, as she introduced the idea of Open Society (one talks only about her less intelligent mouthpiece, the Athenian fateful leader and general, Pericles, her husband). Plato himself recognized the importance of mathematics, and Aristotle of the scientific method. That means implicitly that they recognized the supremacy of older thinkers. Socrates recognized that, in the matter of love he was not an expert. Instead, a female philosopher was the expert, Diotima, a teacher of Socrates, a priestess, and a philosopher of love.

Now we have a nuclear tyrant threatening the world, Putin. Plato admired and befriended the tyrant of Syracuse. Would Plato have admired and befriended Putin? After all, Putin is a homicidal tyrant, and Plato is on the record for loving those…

Probably not: Putin is obsessed by the Slavs, Orthodox Christianism, and Russians … none of which existed in Plato’s Time. Plato was obsessed with the Greeks.Aristotle, who was not really just a Greek, fled Athens after the death of Alexander, because he knew Athenian democracy would put him to death, as an accomplice of the Macedonian storm which was coming Alexander was partial to Athens, even Athenian democracy… not his successor Antipater… Athens’ democracy lasted around 200 years. Its demise is dated to August 2, 338 BCE, at three in the afternoon, when the Macedonians led by Philippe overwhelmed the Athenians, the Thebans and their allies in the battle of Chaeronea.  

In any case, the long love story with the enemies of democracy, Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, prevented the rise of full direct democracy, and thus helped make a tyrant like Putin respectable enough to enrich him.

And thus, now the world is threatened with the most terrible war ever. A war waged for tribal reasons: the rule of tribal Slav Orthodoxy… One unbalanced man is threatening the world, without any pretense to a more advanced civilization, which the USSR had. Tribalism is, of course, a pretext. Putin is just for extending his own rule, because he burned his bridges long ago. If he loses power, he will lose his life. 

Time to make this personal, because it is. Aristotle reserved the word “democracy” for anarchic mob rule. He also excluded greed as a motivation for conflict: “Men engage in factional conflict through fear, both when they have committed injustice and are frightened of paying the penalty, and when they are about to suffer injustice and wish to forestall it.”

Right, but not only. Men engage in conflict for greed too. In devious ways, Aristotle glorified the aristocracy, excluding the rest:

“We must lay it down that the association which is a state exists not for the purpose of living together but for the sake of noble actions.”

That’s obviously a silly statement… or then one has to interpret “noble” etymologically, from “to know”. The first cities were established because they enabled an easier life. Not to say Aristotle was bad, far from it: 

“A tyrant must put on the appearance of uncommon devotion to religion. Subjects are less apprehensive of illegal treatment from a ruler whom they consider god-fearing and pious.”

This is what Putin does: he displays great reverence to Orthodox Christianism, and to pan-Slavism, led by Moscow, on a mythical scale. So great is his deference that any attempt against it, he claims to be “genocide against Russia“.

Tyranny is the fruit of a gradual process of development. So wrote Plato and Aristotle, who were in a very good position to know, both having taught and befriended tyrants.  Greek poetry and historiography agreed. If tyranny is, by definition, unconstitutional and illegitimate rule, then there may be no clear moment at which one ceases to be a general or king or president and becomes a tyrant. Instead, the tyrant gradually strengthens his rule and develops the negative attributes associated with absolute and illegitimate power. Initially good and popular governments can become despotic and unpopular: tyranny is progressive. One then needed some measure of democracy to have a notion of tyranny: The odium now associated with the word turranos grew, as democracy grew (Sanskrit and classical Chinese have no equivalent term).  

The Kaiser, Lenin, Hitler, Mao, Pol Pot were just warnings. Now tyranny can become much more brutal and sudden, thanks to nukes, and their complete obedience to just one nut, the nut who pushes the button. One nut has bet that democracy will fold, because democracy does not want to be nuked now. But democracy is smart enough to figure out that, if it does not go to war now, it will be nuked tomorrow, and it will be worse..

Biden has been outbid.

Nukes and nuts: it was bound to happen. War is going to focus minds, finally. Our lives are becoming a succession of events so unfortunate that, although long predicted, their very horror and difference from the ordinary made them, somehow, look unlikely, so we did not prepare.

Nukes and nuts: thoroughly undigestible, but we have to swallow it. 

Socrates, Plato and Aristotle weakened the concept of democracy. This is why their works were preserved (sort of: only lecture notes in the case of Aristotle, and gossip for Socrates)… by enthusiastic fascism friendly oligarchs and their servants. Now we pay the price, because our semi-fascist regimes made goo goo eyes to the thoroughly fascist Putin. 

Patrice Ayme

***

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2014/09/28/aristotle-destroyed-democracy/

ENTANGLEMENT AND COMMUNICATIONS AT A DISTANCE: POSSIBLE. It Seems to be a Technological, NOT a Scientific, Problem!

September 24, 2020

 Abstract: Usual arguments against faster than light communications are flawed. Moreover, a way to make such faster than light communications using Quantum Nonlocality is surfacing…

The title will make pontiffs scream, and deride me as beyond the “fringe”. But I am writing for the future, not the past. Pontificating physicists hold that instantaneous communication at a distance are impossible. However, a closer examination shows that there is NO deep, DEMONSTRATED scientific principles at work in the denial that superluminal communications are possible.

Instead the proponents of impossibility of faster than light pretend we have demonstrated that nothing more can be said beyond the strictest interpretation of CIQ, the Copenhagen Interpretation of the Quantum (this silliness started with an erroneous demonstration of the famous mathematician Von Neuman).

Such a matter of principle position is religiously superstitious, not based on experimentally demonstrated principles… And indications are that the preparation of Quantum Jumps/States can de detected, and reversed. If that is confirmed, it is entirely plausible that superluminal communications should be achievable by entangling particles which would have been transported classically previously… far apart, creating a superluminal telegraph.

***   

Doing physics correctly, and, more generally, doing thinking most correctly, consists in establishing what are the most significant facts and how to build the mightiest causal chains. A causal chain is mightier than another if it relates more significant facts.

Faster than light communications between mythological beings were natural. However in the 17C, Dutch astronomer Roemer discovered delays in the motion of Jupiter’s satellites best explained by a finite speed of light. Fizeau confirmed the finite light speed in the lab, using fast wheels with teeth, during the 19C… while the speed of light showed up in the equations of electromagnetism, Maxwell found out, to the point he concluded that electromagnetism was light. 

French astronomer Urbain Le Verrier determined in 1859 that the elliptical orbit of Mercury precesses at a significantly different rate from that predicted by Newtonian theory… in which the speed of gravitation was infinite, a simplification Newton found “absurd” to any “philosopher” versed in the observation of nature (how could there be any other?) Einstein and his collaborators integrated Laplace’s finite gravitational speed idea, in conjunction with the theory of Relativity, to produce a modified theory of gravitation, where gravitation travels at the speed of light.

***

WANT BETTER PHYSICS? GET BETTER PHILOSOPHY!

Out of all this came a mood: no interaction can go faster than light. For weird reasons, all crows crowing the same, and mental confusion, the mentality which evolved in the herd of most physicists was that causality would be destroyed were any communication went faster than light. 

But a mood is no proof. 

Detailed considerations of the logics used by the herd found them coming short. Basically, Relativity is local, whereas communications at a distance are… at a distance, by definition (a philosophical point)… Thus, relativity does not apply, or at least, does not apply as an ABSOLUTE principle in the matter of causality: 

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2020/08/25/kill-locality-to-save-causality-and-objective-reality/

This is the Standard CIQ, the Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum is seriously nuts. Here it is above. So crazy many physicists prefer to it it the thoroughly demented Many Worlds Interpretation (MIW), which says an infinity of worlds is created during each interaction. An infinity of infinites infinitely happening? Not serious!

Quantum Physics says there is such a thing as QUANTUM ENTANGLEMENT. The basic reason is that Quantum Physics computes with waves. Those waves wave in various spaces, depending on the configuration of the situation (which are Hilbert spaces, and called “configuration spaces”, because they depict the configuration of the situation). What these spaces are supposed to is controversial (Schrodinger Cat Paradox): we need a theory ordering those spaces, but never mind…

After an interaction in some cases, two particles, Alice (A) and Bob (B), can be created which are “Quantum Entangled” (Schrodinger chose the word “entangled”, in English!) What “entangled” means is that the computation of what happens, probably, with these two particles, A and B, is described by a SINGLE wave.  A measurement consists of analyzing, thus destroying this common wave [1]. THUS, measuring a feature of A creates the same feature in B. The problem is that A and B can be ten light years away [2].

Popper and Einstein discovered this “EPR” situation. Ironically enough, Einstein, one of the founders of Quantum Physics, and an expert in fields, which are local, found Quantum Physics in contradiction with Locality. It is described that Einstein found that “spooky” interaction at a distance. However what Albert said in German was spukhafte Fernwirkung, which rather means “ghostly”, unreal… But in truth if the interaction at a distance didn’t happen, things as simple as angular momentum conservation would be violated. So it has to be there. And it is, experiments have confirmed.

Many self-described mainstream herd physicists insist that at-a-distance communications are impossible. However, their reasoning are faulty. First, as I said the argument that at a distance, faster than light would destroy causality is not correct, it rests on a shallow interpretation of Relativity, and a category mistake. But then those same physicists use what they view as the definitive argument that it cannot be done with present technology:

***

How To Achieve Communications At A Distance: A Technological, Not Scientific Problem:

Suppose we could make it so that a particular feature of A (say spin in the x direction) would always come out the same. Then it would be the same at B, and thus we could communicate. Mainstream physicists say: oh, but God plays with dice, and it is impossible to prepare Quantum States. How do they know this? Oh, because Homo Erectus couldn’t do it, and was a friend of “God”? God or Godot? 

However that is purely a technological question. Scientists at Yale, professor Devoret and his laboratory, have claimed they can see Quantum Jumps being prepared, and can reverse those preparations.  This hints that we may be able to select Quantum States by deliberate action. All what’s left then to do to achieve at a distance communications is to select pairs of particle A and B with such states where we could entangle them. 

Some will sneer this is just one APPLIED physics lab. Now it turns out that as a recent Nature article has it, Quantum Tunneling takes time (it takes no time in strict CIQ). There again, it smacks of inner, SUB QUANTIC machinery at work (Sub Quantum Physical Reality, SQPR pointing its entangling nose…)

***

So the impossibility of communications at a distance boils down to just one thing: the belief that God plays dice with the universe, as a matter of faith (ironically, Albert Einstein was explicitly against the notion, as he invented it, just to decry it; I say ironically as many of the disbelievers in superluminality on principle pretend to worship Einstein…).

How do those believers know that their faith is correct? Because they are on a personal basis with Dog?

Quantum entanglement experiments have been realized between an atom, say, and a photon. The Yale experimenters detected the preparation of a Quantum State Jump, and claimed they could reverse the preparation. Philosophically speaking, supposing the Yale experiments are thoroughly confirmed, as the nonlocality was, this means that the establishment of supraluminal networks is a matter of when, not if.

To go further in the philosophy of nature, this further demolishes the “It From Bit” philosophy of Wheeler and others. Wheeler was a famous physicist and Feynman PhD advisor… and also advisor of the guy who invented the Many World Interpretation…

To be more specific: what I allege above is that the state of the art of the edge of most probable science shows that superluminal communications is becoming just a technological problem (namely finding the right classically transportable materials to entangle and store).

But I am not pretending that that we will be capable of superluminally transport mass-energy. So, if what I am saying is right, a distinction would appear between pure information and mass-energy: information could go faster than light, but not mass-energy… at least for the foreseeable future (many thinkers have insisted there was no distinction between information and mass-energy, because, prior to this analysis, there was no way to transport information without transporting mass-energy).

I fear for my reputation not: Science advances, but the logic of mussels does not.

Patrice Ayme

***

***

P/S: In SQPR theory, the Quantum Interaction proceeds at finite speed. Thus, so will communications using the EPR and prepared states, as suggested above. But the speed will be much higher than light. Of course establishing such superluminal networks will be cosmically difficult.

***

[1] Analysis comes from thoroughly dissecting: from the Greek, ana “up, back, throughout” + lysis “a loosening, a cutting through”… No wonder the deepest thinkers are deeply resented for their thoroughly cutting…

***

[2] Distant particles which have interacted in the past, but not yet measured, remain connected, instantaneously sharing their physical states no matter how great the distance which separates them. This connection is known as Quantum Entanglement, and it underpins the way Quantum Physics turns locality into globality, the infinitesimally small do the grand and cosmic. .

Einstein thought Quantum Mechanics was ‘spooky’ because of the instantaneousness of the apparent remote interaction between two entangled particles, which seemed incompatible with some elements of Relativity.

Later, CERN Theoretical Physics head, Sir John Bell, formalised the Bohm variant of the EPR concept of nonlocal interaction by describing a strong form of entanglement exhibiting this spookiness. Bell entanglement is being harnessed in practical applications like quantum computing and cryptography.

WHY DID BIRDS APPEAR? FEATHERS!

March 8, 2020

Sounds like a joke, but the idea is (new and) serious: when flying in forests, feathered wings are superior to membrane wings. 

Why birds, indeed? The skies were already fully occupied. Pterosaurs (“Wing-lizards”) had dominated the skies for 80 million years. Pterosaurs were the best fliers which ever were, so good that human computation, for the first century after their discovery established they couldn’t possibly fly: some of them were twenty times too heavy, at least. The (heaviest flying bird today is the Kori Bustard (Ardeotis kori) of Africa: males weigh about 18kg, females about half that. A swan once was found, weighting 23 kilograms: it was not clear that it could fly. The largest bird ever to fly were the Teratorns (a type of Condor), the largest of which, Argentavis Magnificens, from Argentina as its name indicates, had a wingspan up to 7 metres, and weighed up to 75kg.

The largest azhdarchid pterosaurs of the Cretaceous, such as Quetzalcoatlus and Hatzegopteryx, had wingspans exceeding 10 m (33 ft), and perhaps 12 m (39 ft) or more. Mass estimates for these azhdarchids are around 200–250 kg (440–550 lb) and their estimated height on the ground was roughly analogous to an elephant or small giraffe. They could launch themselves from flat ground, using a spectacular jumping technique, now known in detail. They were also predatory, and represent a degree of horrors not yet depicted in horror movies (but now it will come). The origins of birds are much more amusing:

Ready to take flight: 155 million year old: Dinosaur Bird prototype Paraves Xiaotingia shows that several features, including long, robust forearms, with lots of long feathers, that were pre-Bird, indeed. It also is equipped with pants which it used as a second pair of wings (that was typical of early birds).

So let’s backtrack. Some small pterosaurs lived in forests, among trees, flying here and there. Scurrying below, 155 million years ago, were dinosaurs. Some of the dinosaurs looked pretty much like chickens with feathered arms much more powerful than chicken wings, but also claws to climb up trees. Early birds learned to glide and parachute from trees before achieving full-fledged flight. They descended from arboreal parachuters and gliders, similar to flying squirrels. Naturally the feathers on their arms grew to accommodate ever more gliding. Except that, having feathers, dinosaur-birds could augment the area of these protowings in a way squirrels cannot. Once so equipped dinosaur-birds (technically called pre-birds, proto-aves) thrived more than Pterosaurs, as they could fly better among vegetation than Pterosaurs. Feathered, clawing dinosaurs had risen to the occasion, and successfully competed.

If this theory is correct, one should observe, in the paleontological record, the progressive disappearance of pterosaurs in forests colonized by birds, were they were out-competed by birds, and then, 50 million years later, bats… which had another trick up their ears… [1]

These are interesting considerations bearing more general philosophical lessons:  first that hardware choices can have long term consequences. Pterosaurs had wings made of skin, muscles and fibre. Right, they had no need of flight feathers. But, it’s not just that they didn’t evolve them… Pterosaurs had a kind of down, but couldn’t turn it to flight feathers, from the structure of their existing wings. It’s a case of HARDWARE INERTIA. Birds started from clean slate, or rather, clean arms…  [2]

Then something extraordinary happened: after they took flight birds evolved very powerful brains. Or was it like feathers, a much older trait? If so, then dinosaurs were really smart. In any case, we can see form following function. Birds took to flight, showing that, if there is a will, there is a wing, and a prayer.

Patrice Ayme

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[1] So what of bats, then? Bats evolved probably 100 million years ago, or so, in tropical areas… echo-locating moths have been found at 85 years Before Present, showing bats were solidly established by then (also bats are close to no other mammal group, so had long evolved).  Just like birds had the trick of having feathers, which pterosaurs couldn’t easily evolve, the bats had large mobile ears, something dinosaurs had not evolved. And thus bats could evolve echolocation. That was an advantage over birds, which compensated for their more fragile wings (comparable to pterosaur wings). 

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[2] Pterosaurs had down like feathers to help keep them warm, just like many dinosaurs. The feathers they had are small and tufty. They possessed a dense filamentous covering the entire body, at least in anurognathids, and were probably for insulation, tactile sensing, signalling and aerodynamics. Fossils found as long ago as the 1840s revealed that pterosaurs had fur on their head and bodies. Palaeontologists came up with the term “pycnofibres” to describe it, to distinguish it from the hair of mammals and the feathers of birds. In recently discovered fossils, these pycnofibres are exceptionally well preserved. Much of the head, body and limbs of these pterosaurs were covered by hair-like filaments, just we have long thought was the case. Microscopic studies of the pterosaur feathers revealed pigment-containing structures called melanosomes, whose shape suggests known fossil pterosaurs were a gingery brown colour in life. The ones well-studied were small animals that probably flitted from tree to tree in forests, and fed on insects.

   

Does Placidity Elevate Always? Hell No! On Spinoza’s Slumber

February 23, 2020

Do Cows Have Higher Minds? Spinoza’s Philosophy Condemned For Apathy

A famous leitmotiv of Baruch de Spinoza: “Man soll die Welt nicht belachen nicht beweinen sondern begreifen”. The quote (originally in Latin) is from his Tractatus theologico-politicus. English translation: “one should neither laugh at nor lament the world, but only understand it.” That sentiment has been much lauded, by those who want to feel elevated. It’s wrong in more ways than one.

Spinoza’s idea is that one would not associate the world with negativism, or positivism, tragedy or comedy, but just, well, understand it. Thus one would avoid categorizing, prejudice, bias, etc. which reminds us to avoid the tendency to categorize and judge other people or ideas (as if there was a different way of thinking than categorizing and judging stuff). 

Instead, Spinoza calls for an openness to learning, akin to what Jane Addams called “affectionate interpretation” in A modern Lear, her (flawed) interpretation of the lethal plutocratic events in Chicago in 1894. There was a strike, strikers were executed in a plutocratic plot, plutocrats won. Around 30 workers were murdered by railroad agents and their allies. Conveniently Ms. Addams depicts the malefactors as in need of “affectionate interpretation”. Quick! A Nobel Prize! 

Jane Addams: “good citizens actively pursue knowledge of others—not just facts but a deeper understanding—for the possibility of caring and acting on their behalf.” Depict suspected criminal against humanity Joe Biden, telling us “I don’t think 500 billionaires are the reason we’re in trouble. The folks at the top aren’t bad guys…billionaires are actually nice guys”.  

Addams was famous for “Hull House”. Co-founder Ellen Gates Starr said of Jane Addams, “if the devil himself came riding down Halsted Street with his tail waving out behind him, [Jane Addams would say] what a beautiful curve he had in his tail.” Of course, Addams, as a good agent of plutocratic affectionate understanding, got the Nobel Peace prize in 1931 (she had also advanced “colored” people, etc…)

The idea is often attributed to HARVARD professor Santayana … probably because Hardwart is so superior. Actually Santanaya didn’t hide Spinoza’s influence on himYes, well, sometimes, the best citizens line up their U.S. Navy Dauntless dive bombers on that gigantic red sun on the yellow decks of the Akagi and Kaga plunging and waiting until the last second to drop their 1,000 pound bombs. In five minutes three large Japanese aircraft carriers from Pearl Harbor were on fire, shaken by explosions, and their elite aircrews were roasting… never to be replaced, as Japan, differently from the USA, didn’t have the plane-smart manpower, and gasoline, to train replacement aviators. 

Affectionate interpretation” as an advanced intellectual doctrine should have stopped long before it led to Auschwitz. The moral imperative is the exact opposite, when in doubt.

Now Baruch (“Blessed” in Hebrew) Spinoza had reason to play the passion-less violin, in times when people were executed for opinion on a routine basis by fascist autocrats such as Louis XIV, the Pope, the catholic Inquisition, and countless lesser tyrants throughout Europe. So, I excuse Spinoza, then. But I don’t excuse the same benevolent attitude to the world, now. Although I do use benevolence on a routine basis, I don’t make a religion of it. Actually, I made a religion of overruling it. 

Some view this method as the way to reject dogma and insist on reason. One couldn’t be more mistaken… A proof, as usual, was the apathy with which German Jews received Hitler: they got too busy trying to understand Hitler… affectionately, for the best. Thus they became not just victims, bt his accomplices 

The quote (originally in Latin) is from his Tractatus theologico-politicus, but the general idea recurs throughout his Ethics. It’s actually not so much a “should” as it is Spinoza’s attempt to describe his own method–what he’s endeavored to do through his philosophy.

Friedrich Nietzsche picks up on Spinoza’s method in The joyful wisdom (aka, “The Gay Science”, La Gaya Scienza). He emphasizes that the issue is not to replace emotions with reason, but actually to realize that reason grows from the emotions (hence their name, hey!):

“What does Knowing Mean? Non ridere, non lugere, neque detestari, sed intelligere! says Spinoza, so simply and sublimely, as is his wont. Nevertheless, what else is this intelligere ultimately, but just the form in which the three other things become perceptible to us all at once? A result of the diverging and opposite impulses of desiring to deride, lament and execrate? Before knowledge is possible each of these impulses must first have brought forward its one-sided view of the object or event.”

Nietzsche is right, and Spinoza (whom he admired), at best, naive. Spinoza tried to deny our psychological motivation, as if intelligence was a castle in the air. Instead the deep emotions are the groundwork, the foundations, of logic. This is what Nietzsche noticed. Amusingly, René Descartes, contrarily to repute given by some cheap US author (Demasio), was not like Spinoza at all: Descartes was very aware, when constructing its magnificent advance in mathematics, of the psychological reasons to do so (I read the originals). To achieve constructive understanding was more satisfying he said, and thus he proceeded to make mathematics which could do so.

Spinoza was a great philosopher. To do so, he had to keep on polishing lenses (that killed him), refusing a belated university job. He had his reasons, that the times forced on him. He lived in a time where tyrants ruled Europe, and the world. The choice for free spirit was to be burned alive in Europe…many printers were, a century earlier, even in France:… or being eaten alive in the Pacific (no refrigeration!)

Nowadays, though, we have no excuses. The likes of Obama and the plutocratic leaders of the world dare say we need leaders, but, in truth, we need to be led by the best ideas, and that means the best cognition, no secrecy a la Xi. In that direction our moral trajectory curves.

Those trains of thought which advocate to collaborate with evil from “affectionate interpretation” should be rejected, so should Spinoza’s official lack of understanding upon how his mind worked. .

Patrice Ayme

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FREE WILL SHOWS QUANTUM PHYSICS IS INCOMPLETE

February 15, 2020

Present Day Quantum Physics Is Entangled With Photon Awareness, While Contradicting Free Will, In A Most Peculiar Way…

Abstract: The Axiomatics of the Copenhagen Interpretation of the Quantum is written as if photons were aware of slits-at-a-distance… And as if photons acted accordingly (as if photons cared about slits!)… But the Copenhagen Interpretation of the Quantum provides NO mechanism for photons to take care of slits. This is absurd in two ways. It’s as if an anthropomorphic Mr. Photon was supposed to be telepathetic. Another problem with the Copenhagen Interpretation of the Quantum (“CIQ”) is that CIQ Quantum Physics, being deterministic, denies Free Will.

Conclusion: Quantum Theory is not the final story. Guiding Wave theories with delayed causality, such as SQPR, are necessary to reduce the nonsense.

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We act, we decide, we initiate actions. Can we insert this faculty for action of our own Free Will, this human agency, into the general picture of nature (“physics”) that we presently have? No! Because physics as we know it is deterministic… And we are not! (Quantum Physics, contrarily to its repute, is deterministic… as long as its nonlocal effects are not considered…) 

Thus the humanity-as-an-independent-agent question leads to the depths of the human mind and its relationship with physical reality, throwing up profound connections to the mysteries of entropy (disorder augments… something biology violates) and the arrow of time (time flowing one way… although fundamental physics flow both ways, contradicting even entropy as fundamental). Even reality gets questioned (what is it?) and consciousness (what could it be?) Surprising answers are readily discernible. 

Quantum fields don’t have any agency. Atoms don’t, do bacteria?” asks physicist Sean Carroll from the California Institute of Technology. “I don’t know, but human beings do. Somewhere along that continuum it sneaked in.

Quantum Determinism a la Copenhagen Means We Have No Freedom Of Choice

Well, it is not even as simple as believing “agency” sprouts between things more complicated than atoms and human beings. Let me make a ridiculously simple observation. 

Take the 2 slit exp. This phenomenon is the conceptual heart of Quantum Physics. If we take the Copenhagen Interpretation of the Quantum (CIQ, pronounced “SICK”), at face value, something astounding occurs: it looks as if an electron, or a photon, has AWARENESS. 

Indeed, according to Einstein, a photon in flight is a localized concentrated “quantum” (Einstein wrote about “Lichtquanten”, light quanta; they got named “photons” 20 years later). 

The following is exactly what Albert wrote, in his otherwise beautiful Nobel Prize winning paper on the photoelectric effect, and has been viewed as definitive truth ever since: “Energy, during the propagation of a ray of light, is not continuously distributed over steadily increasing spaces, but it consists of a finite number of energy quanta LOCALIZED AT POINTS IN SPACE, MOVING WITHOUT DIVIDING…” (I view this Einstein unsupported opinion as a grave error which the herd has made ever since… But I am going to proceed, for the sake of argument, as if this ridiculous idea were true, in the next few lines!)

When one cuts two slits in a screen, a photon (going through just one slit, according to Einstein) somehow knows about the other slit. How? Certainly not by having Mr. Photon look over at the other slit. So, then, what is the root, the nature of this photon “awareness”, Einstein and his followers want us to believe in? 

A photon is aware of the other slit: could such an elementary particle’s awareness at a distance be the fundamental “element of consciousness“? (I am sarcastically parroting terminology of Einstein in 1935, introducing the notion of “elements of reality”) 

A shallow philosopher could chuckle that all consciousness comes from sensation, which comes from senses… And obviously the photon has no senses… Except, somehow, according to Einstein and CIQ, the photon (or any fundamental particle) senses the other slit at a distance (always under Einstein’s locality-of-the-quantum hypothesis, which permeates modern physics, a pervading poison gas)… So, according to them, the photon has a sense, somehow. 

Experiments With Bouncing Droplets such as these three above, were started in Paris in the Twenty-First Century. They provide with the first analogy to guide De Broglie’s Pilot Wave Theory of 1927 and the much more sophisticated SQPR… A problem for the Pilot Wave Theories being that we have NO mathematical models… As mathematicians prefer often to focus on silly problems posed by infinities, the modern analogue of the worry an infinite number of sitting angels on pinheads posed to Middle Age Catholic bishops….

The surface waves generated by the silicon oil droplets above are analogous to quantum mechanical waves that guide the dynamics of quantum particles. While the droplets move like quantum particles, they behave like quantum waves.”… says award winning photographer and physicist Dr Aleks Labuda, who took the picture above.

Guiding Wave (GW) partisans, such as yours truly, don’t have the problem of the telepathic, all aware photon endowed with Free Will: the Guiding Waves go through both slits of the 2 slit experiment, and thereafter “guides” the photon accordingly to the presence of these two slits. (The experimental models of the 2 slits, with bouncing liquid balls, exists… and thus have attracted great hatred from partisans of the Copenhagen Interpretation, such as from the grandson of Niels Bohr, himself a physicist. I will not put links, so as not to confuse readers…)

So, basically, if one rejects a strange photon “awareness”, implicitly assumed by CIQ, one is immediately led to Guiding Waves theories. To this people familiar with the Foundations of Quantum Physics may retort that a GW theory such as De Broglie-Bohm is indistinguishable from CIQ. Right. But I don’t think De Broglie-Bohm Guiding Wave can withstand the EPR 1935. Moreover, my own theory, SQPR, is distinguishable from CIQ: SQPR produces Dark Matter… CIQ doesn’t.

In any case, a GW theory is a mechanical, non local, field of awareness (Bohm makes it into a Quantum Potential). [1]

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With Quantum Physics, we find ourselves back into the ultra-deterministic setting of the Eighteenth Century… But now with a theory which claims to understand everything (whereas in the 18C-19C, some pieces were missing, and not just the two clouds on the horizon  Lord Kelvin saw in the distance…) So the Quantum should explain Consciousness, Free Will… As it explains the universe. But, clearly, it contradicts Free Will… EXCEPT, if one considers nonlocal effects. Nonlocal effects violate local determinism.

The preceding essay stands as a testimony of the usefulness of the philosophical approach to dig deeper into what physics should become in the (hopefully) near future [2]. Not that it was ever different each time physics jumped ahead. All revolutions in physics have been revolutions in philosophy… and the most general revolutions in philosophy often preceded revolutions in physics and science in general [3]. For example, the Renaissance of the Eleventh Century preceded the Buridan (and his schools!) astronomical, physical and mathematical revolution after 1350 CE. In turn it may have accelerated the Fifteenth-Sixteenth Century philosophical Renaissance which clearly led to the Seventeenth Century scientific and technological revolutions, an ambitious protest against more modest understanding.

Patrice Ayme

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[1] One thing that makes SQPR different from De Broglie-Bohm (DBB), is that SQPR supposes the Guiding Field proceeds, expanding or collapsing, at an extremely fast… but NOT infinite… speed. Another is that the Guiding Field carries minute, but non zero mass-energy. Both effects together predict the Dark Matter effect… Also SQPR makes Quantum Entanglement a mass-energy conveyor, hence non-magical, another deviation from both CIQ and DBB…

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[2] Quantum Computers exploit the Foundations of the Quantum… but not through the brute force of Quantum Field Theory and its (glaringly very incomplete and haphazard) “Standard Model” ….the one with no model for Dark Matter or Dark Energy. So Quantum Computers bring the foundations, such as Quantum Entanglement, crucial for their operations, into focus… Hence expect foundations to become ever more crucial in the common Zeitgeist…

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[3] This is particularly blatant reading Descartes, who justified his enormous advances in mathematics with a cocktail of philosophical and psychological observations of the most judicious types. Just as I question infinity, Descartes questioned the sort of proofs mathematicians had been satisfied with for two millennia… and did something about it (by inventing Algebraic Geometry)….

Nature Is The Ultimate Teacher

December 1, 2019

WILDERNESS IS NOT JUST NICE, IT’S REAL. A TEACHER. GET LOST TO FIND HOME.

Nothing beats being lost in the wilderness as a formative experience. John Muir did this a lot. He loved a good storm shaking the tree where he elected to reside at night, just to experience the power of nature. Who needs the god of books, when the goddess of reality shakes your tree? (Muir, and several of his friends and followers, including the hyper plutocrat rail magnate Harriman, father of the Democratic Party controlling Harriman brothers, proceeded to save enormous swathes of US wilderness, from Alaska to Florida…)

I have practiced that exquisite, most captivating activity myself, getting lost in the wilderness, on 5 continents, since early childhood. In my search for truth and wisdom, I was attracted by that teacher, reality in full. As found in nature, from nature, by nature. It’s not just a question of allure, or thrill, or adrenaline, or of the hyper concentration it requires to not sprain an ankle, not crash into a tree, not catch a root, not go fly head first, not falling into a hole…

It’s not a question just of keeping a sense of orientation. It’s not just a question of listening to the sounds of possible predators, or looking scary enough to keep them at bay, even if one doesn’t see them, and have only a vague idea of where they potentially lurk. It’s not just a question of continually analyzing the ominous silence indicative of predators, bears, lions, hungry canids, and the discrete high pitch sound signaling wasps or African bees… while keeping an eye for snakes, spiders, thorns and pointed branches.

I used to worry about panthers in Africa (one visited me at night when I was ten years old, sleeping in a national park in a tent, leaving a definitive impression)… Now I worry about mountain lions (once I saw tow at dusk in half an hour, and I was running…) Leopards may have evolved to attack not just primates, but specifically, humans.

Baboons have canines to help lions think. We have stones, to help all beasts think, and learn how to measure distance. As a human child, I fought stone battles with full grown baboons. So much about pacifist beasts. Because we are superior tree climbers (more than even baboons), the human shoulder can throw stones more powerfully and further than baboons.

Getting lost in the wilderness and surviving it is not just a question of exerting judgment to choose in a timely manner whether to turn left or right, go up or down, or which direction to bushwhack. It’s not just a question of finding strength when has not had water, food, or rest for hours, or ignoring pain in one’s feet, and general exhaustion, or of seeing in the dark, or surviving hail, or of continually moving enough to fight the otherwise paralysing, deadly cold, not just a question of judging the depth and nature of the snow, or of the swift water, or of navigating by the stars.

Bears know stones, and they fear and hate them (because they have been injured by them). So, when bears and other beasts meet a stone master, a human, they are instilled with respect, especially if they are reminded of reality with a little stone play. The stone master can make a demonstration, for this wild audience, and, if that’s not enough, can actually connect with the recalcitrant ursid… (Something I have done, because I had to do it; law enforcement killed that particular bear, three weeks later… After he injured gravely a grandmother…)

Getting lost in the wilderness is all this, and more, all of it in one day, especially when crossing mountain ranges. This is when we get lost in the universe, in which our astounding brains can be all they are, and love to become wiser for it by visiting what is inaccessible otherwise: nature itself, raw, greatest trip of all, astounding in power, awesome beyond anything human…

Nature, embracing the wilds, reveal how humanity shines the most, finding its real home, which is not just its comfort range, but the entire universe we need to make us whole.

We need to get lost, to find where home is.

Patrice Ayme

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P/S: The preceding essay was inspired by Lost and Found in Hemingway’s Spain
Of fear and thankfulness. The white elephants of eternity are always out there.” by Roger Cohen, NYT, Nov 30, 2019 (he published my comment). Roger got lost in a national park in central Spain, and was helicoptered out… (I myself was the object of 3 mountain rescues I neither asked for, not needed… But I have been in dire straights, many times… As I generally engage best when the epic factor is significant and  potentially dramatic… Nietzsche used to do solo climbing on a glaciated mountain, with crampons, a mountain I have skied on, of course… Nietzsche had guessed much of what was above, and that’s easy to do, as, if one tries to get lost in the wilderness, the subsequent enlightenment and drugging aspect is so strong, one will be back… if one can…)

Here is from Cohen’s essay, as it’s pretty typical of the lost-by-accident syndrome:

“Earlier this year, I got lost while hiking in the Sierra de Guadarrama, which rises to almost 8,000 feet in central Spain. It had been a grueling day under the September sun. The trail, scattered with boulders, was longer and steeper than expected. What had been described as a gentle glide along a ridge after a tough initial ascent proved unrelenting.

About seven hours in, I fell behind my two friends. I was following stone mounds, or cairns, not the clearest indicators in this case. False guides, they pulled me deeper into the mountains.

This was not a sudden realization but a growing unease that culminated in an admission: lost. Lost as in every human being has vanished. Lost as in I have to slow my heartbeat. Lost as in there are perhaps two more hours of daylight, my lips are dry and I’m out of water. Lost and small in a sierra suddenly vast and threatening.

The stupidest decisions can seem natural enough. For the three of us to separate, for our remaining water to be with my friends, even to undertake this trail without adequate information, was lunacy. Yet it seemed like harmless lunacy — until the mountains rebuked me with their immensity.

I had no water but did have a faint bar of reception on my dying cellphone. All I managed to communicate to my friend was two words — “I’m lost” — before we lost each other again.”

Saved by technology unthinkable three decades ago…

“I looked around. I’d been descending, several hundred feet. I needed to climb again, get around the rocky outcrop above me, to be more visible. In the direction I’d been heading lay only wild terrain and jagged peaks.

Adrenalin is the most exhausting form of energy. Fear is a survival instinct as long as panic does not supplant it. I climbed without feeling the effort, leaping from boulder to boulder, but growing more parched. Far below me the switchbacks of a forest track appeared. No visible way to reach it.

Don’t fall or twist an ankle. Don’t trust that rock with your weight, misjudge the depth of the juniper thicket, or turn in circles. How and at what point does extreme thirst affect the mind? Don’t panic. Think.

This is the paradox of Getting Lost In the Wilderness: contrarily to repute from stuffed academics and drugged out pseudo-philosophers, the wilderness is a place to learn to THINK and CONTROL emotions (because one doesn’t want to move in haphazard directions… That could mean death, and right away…)  One should even say that the wilderness is THE place to learn to think and emote correctly, because, not only it contains the universe in full, but it’s the ultimate disciplinarian… And Roger to have a bird experience. The bird experience is indicative of the ripe state of an epic. It happened to me even in California with two condors, at the night was coming (the only time I ever saw California condors).

“Then I saw the birds, two of them. They were looking at me. Hulking and black, they were perched side by side on a rock like bloated chess pieces. No, they were not looking at me, they were eyeing me.”

Europe has Black Vultures. The Black Vulture, not just a vulture, is the largest bird of prey. It will attack wounded hiker. A French woman with an injured leg in the Pyrenees was left by her companion who went for rescue (there are no phone coverage in most mountain range yet, this side of Elon Musk…). When the rescuers came back, Black Vultures, who had killed her, were disposing of her remains. They will attack cows. Europe has also the magnificent Gypaete, the only bird known to have killed a (Greek) philosopher. Last year I was doing a high altitude rock climb, off season, the snow was everywhere, the sun was getting low, and these four Gypaeti came to study us very carefully, to see if we were going to make it. They used the updraft of the formidable, slightly overhanging limestone peak to make alluring acrobatics, eyeing us with yellow eyes… When they decided we were too vigorous, they left…

But dogs can be the worst: like leopards, they can be hard to impress: A pregnant woman was killed by dogs in a forest in France as a hunt took place nearby, investigators have said.

“The body of the 29-year-old woman, who was walking her own dogs at the time of the attack, was found in the forest of Retz outside the northeastern village of Saint-Pierre Aigle on Saturday.
An autopsy revealed that the woman had died of “bleeding from several dog bites to the upper and lower limbs as well as to the head,” prosecutor Frederic Trinh said in a statement Wednesday.”
https://www.cnn.com/2019/11/20/europe/woman-killed-dogs-hunt-france-intl-scli/index.html
Once French geologists in Iran (a place where I confronted an angry bear), were attacked by five wild dogs, intent to eat them. So persistent were the ferocious animals, they had to kill every single dog with their geological hammers (the story, which is old, will not be on the Internet, I knew them…)
Nature is not nice. It’s real. A teacher.

 

 

 

 

WANT BETTER PHYSICS? GET BETTER PHILOSOPHY

November 1, 2019

Philosophical progress, the art and desire of guessing new utmost significance, guided our progress in understanding physics for the last three million years, and always will, indeed. 

We can’t experiment before we guess what experiments to conduct, according to the obscure light of a half-baked theory (in other words, philosophy)

So why has the philosophical training of physicists become so abysmal in the last century? The symmetrical question is why most of those called philosophers have had no training in physics and math? Plato would have scoffed that those were not philosophers. 

Neglecting the importance of the philosophical method in physics, for the last two generations may have been caused by the militarization of physics: obeying and pleasing those who order military spending requires yes men, shutting up and calculating, not deep thinkers [1]. History is full of examples of period of stasis, or even massive backsliding, of the understanding of nature, due to the hostility of the establishment to further understanding. This is why the Greeks’ progress in “Physis” stagnated after the establishment of Greek (so-called “Hellenistic regimes”) and Roman dictatorships. Soon after the Macedonian dictatorship grabbed Greece, Euclid wrote his elements… completely forgetting the non Euclidean geometry established a century before! (And it stayed forgotten for 21 centuries!) one wonders which other parts of Greek science got also immediately forgotten: these were times when thinkers would be killed on sight (Demostenes actually argued with the guy dispatched by the Macedonians to kill him: they knew each other; the assassin at the head of his squad pointed out to the philosopher he had to earn a living, and him not Demosthenes would have no effect, as somebody else would do the deed. Best to go with a friend!) 

Greatest physicist ever? Du Chatelet discovered… ENERGY, no less! Not just infrared (which she also discovered)! She was also a first class philosopher, and of course, a feminist. She left extensive writings.

Once the will, desire, and methodology of deep thinking has been forgotten, it takes a long time to get it restarted: Europe tried half a dozen attempts at a sustainable Renaissance, over a millennium [2]. What had happened? Books and scholars got deliberately eliminated for 250 years: starting  in 363 CE, religious fanatics systematically burned libraries and tortured to death intellectuals (see Hypatia’s tragic assassination directed by Christian “saint” Cyril).

Spending in physics is good… if nothing else, new technologies can be developed, especially involving high energies. But it shouldn’t focus on only a few avenues of inquiry. However, “High Energy” physics is a revealing term: do we live in a “High Energy” world? No. So why don’t we also focus on “Low Energy” fundamentals? 

Sociological considerations of career advancement show it is safer within the herd, and the herd thinks alike. This is why university physicists form a herd.

Cathedral schools” were mandated 13 centuries ago, and then turned into universities. However, when one looks at quantum jumps in understanding, one realizes that most such jumps happened outside of the career mainstream. The greatest thinkers tend to not follow the most prestigious path at the time! Obviously on the path less traveled are the diamonds found. Master thinkers such as Abelard, Buridan, Leonardo da Vinci, Kepler, Descartes, Fermat, Leibniz, Papin, Du Chatelet, Lavoisier, Lamarck, Cuvier, Faraday, Darwin, even Poincare, De Broglie… are examples of master thinkers who didn’t have conventional careers [3].

There are too many of the most towering intellects standing straight out of all society and academia, for it to be an accident, or a coincidence [4]. And the reason is very simple: it’s easier to be an intellectual hero, and jump out of the box, if you are mostly out of the box of obsolete logic already.  

Patrice Ayme

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[1] Military science has been hard core high energy physics, ever since the French army ordered research on tanks, under the Ancien Regime (now viewed as the first “cars”, but, truly, tanks…18 C). New high explosives saved the French at Valmy. Within a few weeks the first production combat lasers will start protecting some US air bases…

***

[2] Clovis immediately made a reinterpretation of Christianism into something milder, tolerant, compatible with other faiths (~ 500 CE). Within a century, Frankish bishops were teaching secularly, ignoring lethal threats from Rome. In the Eight Century, a law was passed making schooling and its teaching by religious establishments mandatory. In the Eleventh Century, full Renaissance in north-west France brought a violent territorial expansion (England, Sicily, Italy, etc…), a booming economy, the Duke questioning the geocentric system and his protege Berengar assimilating god to reason… 

***

[3] Abelard, Buridan, Leonardo da Vinci, Tycho, Kepler, Descartes, Fermat, Boulliaut/Bulaldius, Leibniz, Papin, Du Chatelet, Lavoisier, Lamarck, Cuvier, Galois, Faraday, Darwin, even Poincare, De Broglie…

    1. At twenty-two, Abelard set up a school of his own, although opponents barred him from teaching in Paris. Eventually without previous training or special study, triumphed in theological debates, and stepped into a chair at Notre—Dame. The rest of his life was a “calamity” (his word) reminiscent of the adventures of all too many an intellectual of Antiquity, and others in my little list: he got emasculated and nearly killed in an attack… Abelard fought Saint Bernard, Christianism most important person,  nearly to death, and, though an abbot was excommunicated… twice. 
    2. Buridan chose not the faculty of theology but the much lower one of arts. 
    3. Leonardo da Vinci was a serious physicist… Yet took to painting and direct regalian support…
    4. Kepler was Tycho’s assistant. Tycho lived off a grant from the Germanic Roman emperor. Kepler spent a lot of energy preventing the execution of his mother as a witch.
    5. Descartes, discoverer of Algebraic Geometry (“equations”), and calculus, an army captain, was on the run, and was not dumb enough to return to France where the Catholic fanatics ruled.
    6. Fermat, co-discoverer of calculus, was a lawyer and MP.
    7. Boulliaut/Bulaldius was a French priest. He got the idea of the 1/dd law of gravitation… As Newton pointed out.
    8. Leibniz was all over the place, even an ambassador. Nobody knows where he is buried.
    9. Papin made the first working steam engine, and the first steam boat (which worked very well). He had to flee France (being a Protestant), then he ran in trouble in England as locals stole his invention, and after legal action, fled to Germany (where he interacted with Leibniz… Same Leibniz of infinitesimals, who made preliminary work on energy which Du Chatelet extended. 

 

  • Gabrielle Émilie Le Tonnelier de Breteuil, Marquise du Châtelet was top nobility, and hot to trot. She had no academic career, but converted her castle into a lab on her own dinero… Lavoisier did something similar, but the Revolutionary Tribunal found he had used taxpayer money to do this (so what? He should have had an exemption and got an award instead of being shortened…)
  • Buffon, Lamarck, Cuvier were research professors at the Museum of Natural History, where they established evolutionary science, but they were not university professors… Darwin, who pointed out natural selection by itself was enough to cause evolution, without the arsenal of contingence deployed by Lamarck and Cuvier two generations earlier, was not a professor at all, but an independent scholar.
  • Galois, an absolute revolutionary. He invented groups, and  demonstrated some equations couldn’t be solved. He got in big trouble for his republican politics, under a dictator, and was killed age 20 (!) spending his last night writing down Galois theory.
  • Faraday, not a university professor, and little schooled in mathematics, was directly funded by the king.
  • Poincare followed an unusual, secondary career path, until he shattered mathematics and physics (he established Relativity, including E = mcc), De Broglie, a prince, studied Medieval history, before pivoting and decreeing Quantum Waves, inventing Quantum uncertainty and the “Schrodinger” equation on the way… (Germanophiles did the rest by attributing his discoveries to… Germanophones; however he got the Nobel within 4 years of the ebauch of his thesis). He was never a professor, but I met him in person… Fellow minds…  

***

[4] Just restricting oneself to Paris, the largest city in Western Europe for most of the last 15 centuries, one could get evaluations of the number of professional intellectuals. Those who really brought progress, were very few, and they have in common that, even though sometimes they were part of the establishment, they were also continually at war, because their advanced ideas alternatively seduced and infuriated the powers that be. But 99.9% of intellectuals, most of the time, didn’t cause a ripple…

 

 

Plane Smart, Not Plain Stupid: The Evil Ones Hurt Equality, The Environment With Private Jets… And They Love It!

March 8, 2019

I have mentioned this many times over the years, here and there. Now The Economist tied it all up together in a neat little essay, which uses many of the concepts I used over the years, such as “plutocrats”, “subsidies for the rich”, “Isle of Man” (a European tax haven, Pluto friends of mine use it…), So I will quote, in extenso, this magazine to which I subscribe.

The Economist: “PLANE STUPID. Private jets receive ludicrous tax breaks that hurt the environment. Scrap them

Print edition | Leaders, Mar 7th 2019

The blue jeans and t-shirts of the global elite are no more comfortable than those worn by the middle class. They drink the same coffee, watch the same films and carry the same smartphones. But a gulf yawns between the rich and the rest when they fly. Ordinary folk squeeze agonizingly and sleeplessly into cheap seats. The elite stretch out flat and slumber. And the truly wealthy avoid the hassles and indignities of crowded airports entirely, by taking private jets. This would be no one else’s business but for two things. First, private jets are horribly polluting. Second, they are often—and outrageously—subsidised.”

Plutocracy rules the world, all the security we need: girls and jets for Plutos!

Let me notice in passing as I have done in the past: the truly wealthy do not pay, overall, taxes. Instead, it’s the other way around.  The truly wealthy are subsidized by the governments they are entangled with. The hold individuals have on the state is very clear in Russia, for all to see… because Russian economic plutocracy was created, ex nihilo from the Soviet plutocracy in the 1990s, a pretty blatant event; Western plutocracy is a much more convoluted affair, and the hiding is much better.

For example descendants of French aristocrats are very powerful and networked in France, but, for obvious reasons, they have become experts at modelling the minds of the simple folks in such a way that those simpletons in their yellow jackets can’t detect how much they serve the descendants of their old masters, through a state carefully tweaked, just so…

The Economist pursues what few media have dared to even approach, the obvious subservience of so-called democracies to global plutocracy. Because global it is: EU plutocrats serve wealthy masters, not just in Europe, but globally. The case of private jets makes that clear. The Economist:

“Private aviation was hit hard by the global financial crisis, when both companies and individuals sought to pare expenses. But now private jets are booming again. This is partly because new booking services and shared-ownership schemes are cutting the cost of going private and luring busy executives away from first- and business-class seats on scheduled flights (see article). But the boom is also a result of tax breaks, which are even more generous than those lavished on ordinary airlines. In Europe firms and individuals can avoid paying value-added tax on imported private jets by routing purchases through the Isle of Man. This scheme has cut tax bills by £790m ($1bn) for imports of at least 200 aircraft into the European Union since 2011. America’s rules are loopier still. Donald Trump’s tax reform allowed individuals and companies to write off 100% of the cost of a new or used private jet against their federal taxes. For some plutocrats this has wiped out an entire year’s tax bill. For others, it has made buying a jet extraordinarily cheap.”

And this is The Economist pointing at the outrageous subsidizing of plutocracy by statocracy. So why is it that European Union legislative process gave a billion Euro rebate to IMPORTERS of private jets? Surely, it’s not to improve European industry: those jets are imported, not made in the EU. Nor does this subsidy benefit any class of Europeans, except plutocrats. This is a particularly clear case where legislators are caught giving hot blow jets to their beloved plutos, source of their comfy future.

The Economist then dares to develop a particular example of how the full mechanism of plutocracy amplifies the Dark Side… the fact that plutocracy is not about just about abuse of power, wealth, subsidies for the rich, or jets, but about becoming more evil. Pluto_Kratia is really Evil-Power. Using private jets render individuals evil, and The Economist has the numbers to prove it:

“The case for flying on a private jet is that it can save time for someone, such as a chief executive, whose time is extraordinarily valuable. Hence companies can offset the cost of these flights against their corporate-tax bills. In some countries the use of a private jet is a tax-free perk for executives. But a growing volume of research suggests that flying the boss privately is often a waste of money for shareholders. One analysis, by icf, a consultancy, found that the jets are often used to fly to places where corporate titans are more likely to have holiday homes than business meetings, such as fancy ski resorts. A study by David Yermack of nyu Stern School of Business found that returns to investors in firms that allow such flights are 4% lower per year than in other companies. Users of such planes are also more likely to commit fraud: a careless attitude to other people’s money sometimes shades into outright criminality, it seems.

In general user of evil mechanisms are also more likely to become ever more evil. This is not just a case of “qui vole un oeuf vole un boeuf” (who steals an egg steals an ox). This is the case of who abuses a child, and gets away with it, is enticed to destroy the planet. Nothing to do with fear, quite the opposite. It’s the (all too human) will to destruction unleashed.

The more they get away with it, the more they do it, because destruction is what they are longing for. An example is Brexit. Plutocrats of all sorts paid (illegally) to prop the Brexit campaign, using everything from private jets to hypnotists and paid Labour officials. And murder was no problem, for them Plutos, naturally:

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/mar/08/arron-banks-ignored-deal-to-stop-pro-brexit-ads-after-jo-cox-death

Actually Member of Parliament Jo Cox didn’t just “die”. She was murdered by a right wing extremist unemployed loser, driven mad by anti-European propaganda, one week before the Brexit vote. He targeted Cox, long a volunteer at Oxfam, a “passionate defender” of the European Union and immigration, because he saw her as “one of ‘the collaborators’ [and] a traitor” to white people.[1]

But back to We The People subsidized private planes, now that we have evoked People subsidized plutocratic media, and subsidized plutocratic abuse and arrogance (I am repeating myself, Plutos being all over opinion is formed). Says The Economist:

“The environmental effects of corporate jets are dire. A flight from London to Paris on a half-full jet produces ten times as much in carbon emissions per passenger as a scheduled flight, according to Terrapass, a carbon-offset firm. New supersonic business jets under development will make that a lot worse. On one estimate, their emissions will be five to seven times higher than for today’s models. Amazingly, these emissions are largely unregulated. Aviation is not covered by the Paris agreement to limit climate change, and most private jets are excluded from corsia, a carbon-offsetting scheme involving most airlines. All in all, private planes could produce 4% of American emissions by 2050 compared with 0.9% today.”

All air travel is bad for the environment. Business class is worse than economy class, because it burns more jet fuel per passenger. Private jets are more damaging by an order of magnitude. The tax breaks for cooking the planet in this way cannot be justified. They should all be scrapped. Carbon emissions should be taxed, not subsidised by the sleepless masses in steerage and the even less fortunate souls who never fly.

[This article appeared in the Leaders section of the print edition under the headline “Plane stupid”]

Thus spoke The Economist! it’s nearly as if reading yours truly. Or when even the pro-plutocratic press has had enough…. of plutocracy.

All air travel is bad for the environment? Yes. And it’s going to get worse: within two decades, air travel, from growth of air traffic is supposed to become 25% of total CO2 emissions (a technological solution would be to go hydrogen, or hybrid… but either requires much more work.)

Private jet service offers many advantages to plutocrats: it’s much faster, there is no security, one can be driven to the door of the aircraft (thus a hijacked private jet can thus be flown into the White House… and then pundits and politicians will declare nobody could imagine that…). However, the more society offers to plutocrats, the more they want: greed is the specifically human oldest instinct. Greed means our ancestors were not satisfied living in the trees, they needed to conquer the savannah. Good. However, too much greed kills, it always has. And now it’s the planet which is getting killed.

The situation with private jets subsidies demonstrate how grotesquely bought our politicians are.  It’s not because Obama and his friend the Plutos fly private, that’s a good thing. There are plenty of private jets in Nigeria, a desperately poor country. It’s related: extreme poverty is caused by plutocracy: it’s the lake plutocrats love to reflect on. Clip their wings.

Hurting humanity is plain smart, and what doctor Planet Earth ordered. At least plain smart for the winners. However, that has to be done in moderation, and the alternative to mass destruction is to navigate out of excess before the former becomes necessary, or unavoidable. This way winners and losers can share destiny… in those times of unfolding mass extinction.

Patrice Ayme


Political Reactionary

Dark Enlightenment and Neoreaction

Of Particular Significance

Conversations About Science with Theoretical Physicist Matt Strassler

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

Power Exponentiation By A Few Destroyed Greco-Roman Civilization. Are We Next?

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Where The Eagles Fly . . . . Art Science Poetry Music & Ideas

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

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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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Defense Issues

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Political Reactionary

Dark Enlightenment and Neoreaction

Of Particular Significance

Conversations About Science with Theoretical Physicist Matt Strassler

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

Power Exponentiation By A Few Destroyed Greco-Roman Civilization. Are We Next?

SoundEagle 🦅ೋღஜஇ

Where The Eagles Fly . . . . Art Science Poetry Music & Ideas

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Patterns of Meaning

Exploring the patterns of meaning that shape our world

Sean Carroll

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

Footnotes to Plato

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

Learning from Dogs

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

Political Reactionary

Dark Enlightenment and Neoreaction

Of Particular Significance

Conversations About Science with Theoretical Physicist Matt Strassler

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

Power Exponentiation By A Few Destroyed Greco-Roman Civilization. Are We Next?

SoundEagle 🦅ೋღஜஇ

Where The Eagles Fly . . . . Art Science Poetry Music & Ideas

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Patterns of Meaning

Exploring the patterns of meaning that shape our world

Sean Carroll

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

Footnotes to Plato

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

Learning from Dogs

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

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