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Creative Thought Is All Over The Place, And Out Of This World, Or Is Not

October 28, 2017

Real breakthroughs in thinking have always come, and will always come, from getting ideas from galaxies of knowledge, far away.

Why? Breakthroughs are, by definition, a change in logic. Logic can change in only two ways: by changing, or adding, one or more axioms, or by changing the “universe” the logic bathe in. Either change is metalogical in nature. Thus, out of the box.

When one speaks of nothing new, one can solve nothing new.

Science didn’t just learn, but it learned to learn. That should be, itself, learned, and one should use how science learned to learn how to learn. And the same holds for thinking. Hence the postmodernist critique of science, which amounted, correctly, to suspect that much science activity was just tribalism in disguise. Thus the “academic specialization” is often exactly that:   tribalism in disguise. Getting a PhD, for example, is often little more than a tribal accession rite enabling one to become a soldier in a larger organization.

Breakthroughs break. If one looks at the Seventeenth Century, most breakthroughs were made by polymaths who were outside of Academia (Kepler, Descartes, Bullialdus, Fermat, Pascal, Huygens, Hooke, Boyle, Leibnitz, etc.).

The pattern goes on: Émilie Le Tonnelier de Breteuil, Marquise Du Châtelet towered in many ways, including the philosophy of science, and as a polymath, she discovered and demonstrated the concept of energy, ½ mv^2 (which Isaac Newton had confused with momentum, mv). And she discovered not just kinematic energy, but infrared energy… (Not bad for someone who died from childbirth in her early forties…)

Lamarck Meditating With Recycled Aluminum Dragon Statue Behind, Jardin des Plantes, Paris

Lamarck, a research professor in zoology who demonstrated, among other things, biological evolution around 1800, was also a polymath: he started, like Descartes as an officer with a military career. After an injury and illness put an end to that, he became an MD, and, while posted in Monaco, developed an interest for botany, when he observed how much the plants varied with the environment there, among rocky crags, roasting mountainsides, sheltered oases,  and fertile canyons. He became the world expert of malacology, which he uses to demonstrate speciation, over millions of years (something the Catholic and Anglican churches hated him for). Darwin, a student of Lamarck of some renown, was also a polymath, like Wallace, outside of academia (Lamarck and evolution couldn’t be taught in England, by law; Darwin and Lyell had to go to Edinburg to be taught evolution).

Historians now believe that Lamarck’s military career and battlefield prowess is the reason Lamarck defended and continued the study, and publication, of his theory of evolution despite its unpopularity in the scientific society of the times (the same applies for Descartes who had to flee the god crazed French superpower).

Lamarck was mostly opposed by the bloody, self-aggrandizing dictator Napoleon and the Catholic and Anglican churches. Napoleon insulted Lamarck, while telling him a number of idiocies witnessed by mathematician and physicist Arago. Essentially, Lamarck viewed life as having arise gradually from inert materials, thanks to physics. Not nice for the self-described god derived Napoleon, a dinosaur in more ways than one (whom all too many French still adulate, while they reject Maréchal Pétain, who was not as bad).

It is curious that Lamarck didn’t insist on natural selection. But clearly the giraffes with longer neck would reproduce better. Not only Anaximander, Empedocles and others mentioned it (they were opposed by the deists Plato and Aristotle), but a mix of natural and artificial selection was well-known to produce superlative Greek cattle sold all over. It’s possible that Lamarck viewed the selection of the fittest as self-obvious. What was less obvious is what impelled animals to become fitter. Even the modern contemporary theory, which views DNA as more durable than stone (except for allele variations) is weak that way.

Lamarck’s observation, the complexifying force is a fact. There again, contemporary biology and physics have no final answer. An obvious hope is Quantum theory, because the Quantum is nonlocal, which makes it all-knowing in some ways. DNA is essentially a Quantum structure, so the connection is obvious. As the deepest polymaths, Lamarck dared to make observations which require explanations whose time has not come yet.

***
There is no reason to believe this superiority of polymath will stop:

As I said, the reason for polymath superiority in the advancement of thinking are intrinsic to the nature of logic, however crazy said logic is.

Jules Henri Poincaré (creator of Relativity, including, local spacetime, E = mc2, gravitational waves, and the most general theories of gravitation of which Einstein’s weirdly called “General Relativity” is a special case) became revered after 1905; however Poincaré’s early career in France was difficult, precisely because the tribes didn’t appreciate his encroachments over their territories… Although Poincaré made it so that Lorentz got the Physics Nobel for Relativity, he didn’t get it himself, although even most deserving of it (later all too conscious of the controversies about Relativity involving Einstein, especially with Bergson, the Nobel committee specifically did NOT give the Nobel to Albert for Relativity).

Many of the top thinkers of the Twentieth Century were polymaths. De Broglie started as a prince studying medieval history. Then the prince wrote a physics thesis, getting the Physics Nobel 4 years later, after his waves were observed by Americans. Cartan, Bergson, Weyl, Feynman, Von Neumann… Nearly all the top research mathematicians or physicists I got to know some of them recipients of the greatest prizes are, to some extent polymaths, or have a very strong desire to be so (Chern, Thom, Yau, Attiyah, Donaldson, Singer, Penrose, Connes, Witten, Susskind,  etc.). When one knows the research in detail, one can see that the pattern is always the same: ideas from way out of the box are brought into a field, and revolutionize it (even Planck, a sedate career physicist, if there ever was one, brought ideas of statistical mechanics to optics to derive the Quantum, another case of polymath…)

Thinking anew requires at least wanting to jump out of the box. It’s intrinsically multi-learning (the translation of polymath). Indeed, “mathema” comes from the Greek manthanein “to learn”. Would-be philosophers can’t invent new wisdom if they couldn’t learn anything new, first.

Let alone the fact that it is hard to invent new ideas from the same exact old basis; “Pascal’s” famous triangle was already known in China, and maybe that’s what Blaise alluded to, when he said “we come too late, since there are men, and they think…“. However, from a new basis, Pascal discovered atmospheric pressure… 

One could say, that learning, mathema, is the opposite of Jihadism, or, more exactly of superstitious religious fundamentalism, which is intrinsically axiom, and universe, reductive, not open and expansionist (as learning is).

The Quantum is out of this world, and all over the place, so is creative thinking. And only those who fester too deep in the box, couldn’t guess why!

Patrice Ayme’

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Zen About Gazing Europeans Again

October 21, 2017

Same Old Same Old: Oligarchy Kills, Because That’s What It Is Best At

The Nazis killed a lot of Europeans they had captured. One always talk of “the Jews” and call that “The Holocaust”, because up to 6 million “Jews” were assassinated by the Nazis. However, the six million number is itself a cover-up, as are the half-dozen “death camps” one always talks about. In truth, there were thousands of camps, up to 42,000, and the number of assassinated civilians and unarmed prisoners of war may have been as much as twenty millions.

Why is not the real truth out? Because statistics were deliberately destroyed (and not just by the Nazis). Also governments (even the Soviet one) were not keen to exhibit how badly they protected their populations. Let alone the fact Soviets and Americans collaborated with “ex” Nazi officials after their defeat (preparing the next war and, or, exploitation scheme).

So the Nazis killed around 4 million citizens a year (they set-up an extermination policy as soon as they, and their Soviet allies, invaded Poland).

How many Europeans are killed right now by plutocratically supported industrial policy, for all to see? Millions a year, probably.

London in smog. At least 50,000 UK citizens killed by pollution in 2014. When 5,000 were killed in London in 1953, drastic measures were taken, then.

There are up to 180,000 chemical products in common use. Very few have been tested enough to be reasonably certain that they don’t cause cancer, aging, inflammation and other diseases in a significant way. Cancer statistics show the opposite: some cancers’ incidence has quadrupled in a century (independently of other known factors, like age of the victims).

Poisonous air killed half a million people in Europe prematurely in 2014, according to a report on air quality from the European Environment Agency in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Air pollution is the single largest environmental health risk in Europe,” says the EEA.

By far the biggest killer was PM2.5, the soup of tiny particles measuring 2.5 micrometres across or less. They brought 428,000 premature deaths across the 41 European countries tracked in 2014. The main source, contributing 57% of PM2.5 emissions in 2015, was domestic wood burning, especially in eastern Europe.

Reality check: many “ecologists” have pushed to burn wood. So much for wood burning, the so-called “biomass”, being ecological. (On top of the fact that burning wood asphyxiates, the bigger, older trees absorbs more CO2 than small trees, so cutting them is doubly anti-ecological.)  

Nitrogen dioxide, mostly from vehicle exhausts, cut short an estimated 78,000 lives across the same 41 countries. Ground-level ozone was the other major killer, claiming an estimated 14,400 lives prematurely.

“Heart disease and stroke are the most common reasons for premature death attributable to air pollution, and are responsible for 80 per cent of cases,” the report says. Air pollution also contributes to other respiratory diseases and cancer, and has non-lethal impacts on diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, pregnancy and brain development in children.

France decided diesel was smart, because it emits less CO2 for the same effective work. However limiting micro-particles is a must and it’s expensive

***

Poisonous Air Concentrations:

The two worst hotspots for PM2.5 pollution were Poland and northern Italy, where dozens of cities exceeded the EU’s annual mean limit of 25 micrograms of particles per cubic metre of air. “Poland and the Po valley have very bad pollution,” says Alberto González Ortiz, the report’s lead author. The Po valley is highly industrial, and surrounded by the mighty Alps, in a great circle, with only a small outlet (the Adriatic sea).

The worst offender was the city of Krakow in Poland, where the PM2.5 value was 44 micrograms. Levels also reached 40 micrograms in Macedonia. More than a dozen Polish cities exceeded 30 micrograms, as did cities in northern Italy including Milan, Padua, Cremona, Brescia, Venice and Turin.

In all, 7 to 8 per cent of Europe’s urban population was exposed to PM2.5 concentrations that exceeded the EU limit. But when the World Health Organization’s stricter limit of 10 micrograms was used as a benchmark, between 82 and 85 per cent of urban Europeans were exposed to deadly air.

***

Solution? Electric Cars!

A solution exists: electric cars, photoelectric generations, and new battery technologies (different from Lithium-Ion, and for mass storage, they start to be deployed) . Battery technology has evolved enough (a Tesla Model S coming out of the factory has succeeded to make 1,000 kilometers on one tank of electricity). Laws should be passed to recycle lithium and phase out fossil fuel cars right away.

Killing millions of people, in Europe alone, because of industrial policies supported fundamentally by the few who profit extravagantly from them, is as vicious as it gets. In the case of the Nazi Holocaust, normal people in Germany could argue they didn’t know, because no one talked about it.

Although they all talked about it, and knew about it, starting in summer 1943, after British night bombing of some major German cities made life very difficult. By then the Germans knew they were punished for “what they had done to the Jews”. The satanic government of Germany reacted with a crack-down on public opinion, and the Germans then went the other ways, fighting to the bitter end, as the hardened criminals they were.

So exposing crimes is not enough. One also has to expose that there will be punishment, and it’s close at hand. And one has to persuade the perpetrators that, should one perseveres, the situation will only get worse. In other words, one has to get in the fine details of: “Errare humanum est, perseverare, diabolicum” (Error is human, persevering, diabolical).  

Politicians should systematically be prosecuted for influence trafficking, and the definition of that should be wildly extended.

In the Roman Republic, most offices were held only a year, and then couldn’t be held again for another ten years. When that system broke down, so did the Republic.

Meanwhile in Spain, a party which got 8% of the vote in Catalonia decided to rule there, supported by a direct descendant of the French king who organized the holocaust of two million French protestants (I am not saying Louis XIV killed directly 2 million French protestants: like the Nazis, he didn’t keep statistics. But two millions had to flee France after decades of terror (the “dragonades).

It’s not just Europe. So far this year, I saw one California Monarch butterfly out of my window. In the same locale, I used to see thousands, each day. Why? Modern insecticides. In primary school, children are astounded, when they see a fly. Just one fly. Never saw one before. Pollution damages brains in more ways, than one.

It’s high time to end philosophies, and policies, which makes the death of millions a casual collateral to greater greed and power expression. That was the fundamental modus operandi of the Nazis.

Patrice Ayme’

Self-Described “Jew” Hides Who & What Caused Holocaust

October 18, 2017

The high-class Prussian-Jewish philosopher Hannah Arendt personally resisted the Gestapo (she was arrested for that). She escaped to Paris, then the USA. She took flak for stating in her 1963 book Eichmann in Jerusalem that without the assistance of the Judenräte, the Jewish Councils, the registration of the Jews, their concentration in ghettos and, later, their active assistance in the Jews’ deportation to extermination camps, fewer Jews would have perished because the Germans would have encountered considerable difficulties in drawing up lists of Jews.

In France, relatively few French Jews died (most of the 75,000 who did were Jewish refugees), whereas in the Netherlands, lists, from IBM and religiously discriminating Dutch law, existed, and most Jews, 125,000 of them, were exterminated.

In general, active resistance by the Jews, and loud screaming, would have handicapped the Nazis, especially inside Germany, where they had only 7,000 Gestapo agents, and they lied to the German population about what they were doing with the Jews..

Hitler’s business was US business. IBM collaborated with Hitler throughout his entire reign of terror. Including during the entire war. US bomber streams seem to have, unbeknownst to the crews, deliberately avoided IBM German factories. Of the 35 IBM factories in Germany, none was significantly damaged (one got its roof blown off)

In occupied Europe, the Nazis entrusted Jewish officials with the task of making such lists of Jews and their belongings. The Judenräte also directed the Jewish police to assist Germans in catching Jews.

In her book, Arendt wrote that: “To a Jew, this role of the Jewish leaders in the destruction of their own people is undoubtedly the darkest chapter of the whole dark story. […] In the matter of cooperation, there was no distinction between the highly assimilated Jewish communities of Central and Western Europe and the Yiddish-speaking masses of the East. In Amsterdam as in Warsaw, in Berlin as in Budapest, Jewish officials could be trusted to compile the lists of persons and of their property.” (well, no, not in France!)

One could reproach to Arendt to consider mostly the duration of the war. However, even in Germany, there was collaborations of leading Jews with Hitler well before Kristallnacht (1938).

Well, in my urge to make more enemies, I go much further than Arendt: the supine character of Jewish resistance was a worldwide phenomenon. Particularly spectacular that way were American Jews. And it is still going on.

I just had an example of it: when I pointed at US plutocrats as a crucial ingredient of.Nazism, I was censored. I think a newspaper which does this sort of thing, should have its licence revoked. (My comments are in the last section, much of what’s below gives the context, but not being  from me, is as clever as the sort of shallow swamps full of alligators and snakes typical of the Everglades…)

***

The entire US establishment was already pro-fascist, before it helped bring the Nazis to power.  General Butler was head of the US Marine Corps.

Roger Cohen:  On Yom Kippur, last month, I was in Berlin. I am not a religious Jew, but on the High Holy Days I like to be in a synagogue, listen to the ancient lilt of Hebrew prayer and allow my mind to drift from daily cares. It is a form of respite. We all need that these days. Worry has become an early riser.

I closed my eyes. The sounds of Jewish worship in the Pestalozzistrasse Synagogue were followed from time to time by instructions or explanations in German. This linguistic alternation, in Berlin, was more freighted than it might be elsewhere. It was an affirmation of healing, but not without a shadowy undertow.

My mind turned to the poet Paul Celan’s phrase, “the thousand darknesses of murderous speech,” and to the complications for a postwar German Jew, or indeed any German, of having a mother tongue that was also the murder tongue. Nothing after the Holocaust is ever straightforward in Germany, not even the jovial smile of the rabbi who conducted the service that day.”

So far, so good. Celan committed suicide in 1970, by jumping in the Seine. However, Roger Cohen believes that “buffoonery” is the world’s big problem:

This is a time of growing fears, in Europe and the United States. Ghosts have stirred. Humanity never quite grows out of the buffoon’s attractions: the scapegoats he offers; the fast money; the rush of violence; the throb of nation and flag; the adrenaline of the mob; the glorious future that will, he insists, avenge past humiliations.

The Enlightenment was not the end of the story. Nor was 1989, that giddy moment for the liberal democratic idea, deemed self-evidently all-conquering. An autocratic, nativist, xenophobic, nationalist reaction is now in full swing on both sides of the Atlantic — as the election in Austria demonstrates again. It demands resolute vigilance. It also demands that we listen, try to understand and resist fracture.”

Hitler met many times with the head of GM. Ford and GM, among other US car companies furnished up to nearly 100% of the equipment in some Nazi campaigns, for example in Spain.

The only good elections are the ones which bring a Macron whom ex-president Hollande accused (in Seoul, Korea) of being the president of the rich: “Tax policy must favour investment not rent. I am not against success, but it must not be of those who get richer while they sleep.”

Cohen apparently is unaware of, or doesn’t care about, the declining reality of the US, or French, or British, middle class, and “working” class. For Cohen, it’s all about those who hate foreigners, it’s not about financial derivatives being twenty times world GDP, and the hyper wealthy ruling the world. Why should he? He works for a newspaper founded (in the nineteenth century by a family which still owns the controlling shares of the NYT), and where the major shareholder is one of the world’s greatest crooks (notice: no names, but judges will find them easily, they are probably on their payrolls…).

Roger Cohen:No nation guilty of a great crime has pursued an honest reckoning and atonement with greater rigor than Germany. It did not come immediately or easily. The country zigzagged its way to a full accounting. There were long silences and significant evasions. But Germany got there.

To me it has yielded a mystery or two, kept others back. You watch, in October, a naked woman emerging from Berlin’s Krumme Lanke lake to the hissing of a swan, watch swans’ wings thwacking the water in the struggle to get airborne, listen to the rhythmic clack-clack of hikers’ polls on the paths in the dark woods — and it is as if you are being allowed to glimpse some secret. Still, you wonder.

The Bundesrepublik is America’s child. It was forged under American tutelage and inspired by high American ideals of liberty. President Trump therefore poses a particular problem for Germany, more acute than for any other European nation. If the United States has forsaken these ideals, if the nation of “We the people” is no longer a universal idea but projects only a pay-up-now mercantilism, Germany will one day have to think again.

So will all allies of the United States. America’s word is a devaluing currency. Across Europe people roll their eyes at the mere mention of the American president.”

The Bundesrepublik was not just founded by the USA. The rest of Europe, and especially France, played an important role. And as far as eyes rolling is concerned, European are subjected to a withering anti-Trump propaganda, which hardly makes them the best authorities on Trump. To my pleasure, I know some candidates for office of the US Democratic Party who have moved beyond Trump Derangement Syndrome, and started to tackle the disastrously Reaganesque inheritance of Clinton-Bush-Obama.

Cohen’s Trump Derangement Syndrome shows up in a way which, considering what he truly hides, and the fact that he censored my comments, is rather ironical:

Roger Cohen: “Just last week Trump tweeted: “With all of the Fake News coming out of NBC and the Networks, at what point is it appropriate to challenge their License? Bad for country!”

This is Putin-Erdogan territory (and they don’t use insane capitalization). Worse, this is the territory where books get burned.

We don’t know yet how far the president is prepared to go in silencing critics who do not meet his test of patriotism, perhaps further than Russia and Turkey. We do know already that he has little idea of what his oath to the Constitution meant.

I am a Lithuanian-South-African-British-American Jew who, strangely, does not like walls, fences, hard borders, Messianic nationalism or race-baiting bigotry. Tell me, how did we get to the point where spewing hatred is the best way to prove contempt for the politically correct?”

Roger Cohen is actually from South Africa, was “naturalized” “British”, and was, very recently, “naturalized” “American”.  He doesn’t know “America” that well (whereas I do!) In any case, I didn’t comment on Cohen’s fashionable, career fostering, hatred for Trump. Last week several of the major news organizations in the USA claimed that Trump wanted to multiply the nuclear weapons by a factor of ten (a 1,000% augmentation). That made a huge noise, before being revealed to be fake news (it would violated international treaties; that’s what Trump alluded to, in the tweet above).

***

Anti-Judaism, because Christianism left no alternative:

Who and what caused “The Holocaust” requires to start with ways, practices and edicts of several Roman emperors (mostly Constantine, Maximus, and Theodosius I) The end result was that, whoever was not judged to be a good Catholic could be executed. Jews escaped that holocaust, because Jesus was a Jew, while Jews were persecuted, because they had killed rabbi Jesus. For more than six centuries, the Franks imposed a general tolerance (later extended even to Vikings and Muslims), which made Judaism as tolerated as Catholicism. But then vicious Catholicism made a comeback, as it became an excuse for violence for nascent nation-states and the nascent plutocratic (“Feudal”) system. For example, when the King of France Philippe Auguste wanted to capture Toulouse he conveniently joined the Crusade the Pope had called against toulouse. Or when Yolande of Aragon wanted to destroy the merger of London and Paris into Europe’s most powerful polity, she fabricated, and financed, Joan of Arc and her Christian voices.

Major, still respected, not to say adulated Christian figures, such as Saint Louis IX and Luther actually made detailed, abominable declarations about what they wanted to do to the Jews that were way worse than the worst Hitler ever said we know of.

(Saint Louis added, though that, inasmuch as he would like to kill Jews, it was against the law, so he couldn’t do it; he just expelled them from France.)

***

“The Holocaust” was not just about Germany and its Germans, Nazism was a US tool, not to say weapon:

It’s mostly the US plutocracy of the type Cohen claims to hate in Trump, which made Nazism possible, with the active support of the US presidency and Congress. This terrible truth has to be hidden at all cost in the USA. And it is. So, when I sent two comments to Roger Cohen to this effect (two because of the 1500 character limit). Neither was published. Here they are below, joined as one.

***

New York Times’ Cohen Doesn’t Want You To Know US Plutocrats Created, Fostered, Fed and Supported Hitler:

Humanity cannot be proclaimed to have pursued a thoroughly honest reckoning and atonement with great rigor, about Nazism and Fascismo, as long as the main characters who enabled Nazism and Fascism have not been shown yet, and recognized for all to see.

All the more as the same mood, from the same sort of plutocrats, is pretty much in evidence now, and arguably, even more in control, using all the levers of public opinion to steer obscurantism.

Hint: Hitler used to have a life-size portrait of Henry Ford behind his desk. Ford’s financing was colossal: by Fall 1923, Hitler had enough money for a well equipped private army of 5,000 with which he tried to seize power (that attempt finished in a volley of bullets from the regular army). In exchange, copies of “The International Jew”, a book by Ford were distributed freely by the Nazis.

Basically an entire galaxy of US plutocrats, industrialists, financiers and bankers supported, and greatly helped to invent Hitler. Dr. Schacht, Germany’s top banker, was actually a personal agent of JP Morgan. Completely at ease in New York and Washington, Dr. Schacht persuaded the German establishment that Hitler had US assent, and enough of an honorable man to become Chancellor (with Schacht as economy and finance minister, 1933).

Hitler’s invasion of Spain in 1936 was completely US plutocracy financed. Hitler laughed all the time that the Luftwaffe had transported Franco’s rebellious army, thanks to Texaco fuel (the US Congress gave a tiny fine to Texaco for that).

All the equipment Franco needed was bought from the US, on US credit. And so on…  By 1935, Britain had signed a “Naval” treaty with Hitler which enabled the latter to violate the Versailles Treaty, and, moreover to do whatever he wanted with Eastern Europe.

Humanity cannot be proclaimed to have pursued a thoroughly honest reckoning and atonement with great rigor, about Nazism and Fascismo, as long as the main characters who enabled Nazism and Fascism have not been shown yet, for all to see.

All the more as the same mood, from the same sort of plutocrats, is pretty much in evidence now, and arguably, even more in control, using all the levers of public opinion to steer obscurantism.

***

Conclusion? Whining about The Holocaust is good, finding why and how it happened, disentangling the web of US (or not) plutocracy which sustained it, is better. Not being interested by that, means one is a hypocrite.

Just an example. Torkild Rieber, CEO of Texaco connected with the Nazi lawyer and businessman  Westrick in 1940.  Westrick represented many American companies in Germany including ITT, Ford, General Motors, Standard Oil, the Texas Company, Sterling Products, and the Davis Oil Company. One day after the cease-fire of France with Nazi Germany (June 26, 1940), Texaco sponsored a celebratory dinner for Westrick at the Waldorf Astoria New York. Attendees included Sosthenes Behn of ITT, James D. Mooney, Edsel Ford of the Ford Motor Company and Philip Dakin Wagoner of Underwood. There are plenty of other examples like that. Hundreds of US corporations invested massively with the Nazis, often on credit they extended to them. Coca Cola, Metro Goldwyn Mayer, Chase Manhattan Bank, Dow Chemical, Brown Brothers Harriman, Woolworth, Alcoa, The Ethyl Corporation of America (making crucial additive for Nazi planes’ engines), IBM, BBH Prescott Bush, are other examples.

Under the Nazis’ reign, blood was exchanged for money. But that was a worldwide phenomenon, which crucially depended upon the Anglo-Saxon empire. This galaxy of plutocrats was much of the origin of today’s plutocracy, either directly, or through a chain reaction of mood. A new book, Dark Money, just exposed just one US plutocratic family’s connection with the Nazis. And Stalin: they all did Stalin too, because the German fascism, and then the Nazis were secretly allied to Stalin (the alliance was made official in August 1939, in a last-ditch attempt to prevent France to declare war to the Nazis).

Dark Money is to be added to “IBM and The Holocaust” and “The Garden of the Beasts”. And of course Anthony Sutton’s book “Wall Street and the Rise of Hitler”. And the more they deny, the more they prove what they are trying to deny. It was actually hilarious to see Koch industries trying to deny the connection of Fred Koch with Hitler:’It was not all what it has been cracked up to be’, they disingenuously whine.

There has been plenty of original research in my various essays on this subject in the last 20 years.  The big picture can’t be denied. And it’s murder. Literally. This is why Mussolini was hanged from a US gas station in Milan. Some people then knew. Now the young have minds which have been molded by the likes of the Kochs, and they feel that those who think that are “conspiracy theorists”. And “secular Jews” like Roger Cohen fully collaborate with the very system which produced Hitler. And it was, first of all, a cognitive production.

Dr. Schacht, Hitler’s economy & finance chief, center, was pretty much JP Morgan’s agent in Germany
ADN-Zentralbild/ Archiv
Unterredung des Reichskanzlers Adolf Hitler mit dem Reichswirtschaftsminister und Reichsbankpräsidenten Dr. Hjalmar Schacht 1936 über die wirtschaftliche Lage

Nazis, and the preceding generations of German fascists who had given birth to them (literally) molded the minds of Germans through censorship (Nietzsche wrote plenty on this, 50 years before the Nazis got to power). Selective censorship, steering the debate towards submission to plutocracy, just like the Kochs, just like an armada of US plutocrats and their media operators, just like Mr. Cohen (the top Nazis themselves were infuriated that they were manipulated by “plutocrats”, and that’s the exact word they used; see the introduction of “Myth of the Big Business/Nazi Axis which is not wrong, although the rest of the article tends to be.).

No more excuse. Civilization progresses through the sustained imposition of higher standards. As long as the ilk of Cohen and the Kochs grovel within the swamp of Nazi, while enjoying respect from the masses, we won’t progress.

Patrice Ayme’

Munich 1938, Or: Britain Helped Hitler

October 9, 2017

Munich 1938, Or When France (or more exactly Britain) betrayed Czechoslovakia

I am for Catalonia becoming more independent. However, there has been a historical problem with smaller states. Smaller states tend to extremes: Serbia was very aggressive many times in its history, all the more as it was justified! Most often, though, rampant Pacifism, anti imperial sentiment, added to the treachery weakness leads to makes small states a problem for international security (North Korea is an example).

Small states played a crucial role in the empowering Hitler (I have mentioned this, in details, many times). Mostly, and hidden behind Hitler, was the USA (for the USA, Germany was a small state, easy to manipulate as a tool against mightier France…) This is nothing new: Sparta was the tool of Persia against Athens (it backfired on all concerned as the end result was Macedonian dictatorship, and, ultimately the subjugation of the Hellenic world by Rome).

However there was a spectacular case of the opposite, where great powers betrayed a small one: Czechoslovakia, 1938.

Czechoslovakia had been subjugated by German-speaking people for a while. In 1919, the Germanophones were forced, by France (mostly) to let the eastern European nations go free, something the vicious, racist Lord Keynes of Britain bemoaned.

The house the Anglo-Saxons built

Czechoslovakia had a completely different language and culture from Germany. However, Hitler argued that an oppressed German-speaking minority, the “Sudetes”, lived all along the natural mountainous border between Germany and the Czech.

In the “Sudeten Crisis“, Hitler got France and Britain to concede the Sudetenland with most of the Czechoslovak border fortifications in the 1938 Munich Agreement. That left the remainder of Czechoslovakia shorn of its natural borders and, literally, defenseless. Finally the country was invaded by Germany in March 1939. Much of the region was redesignated as the Reichsgau Sudetenland (a way to tell the Czech they were in German territory, newly designated that way at least; on the totem pole of ethnicities to exterminate, the Slavs were nearly as high as the Jews).

***

Anglo-Saxon Treachery:

Much of the world, and certainly North America was obtained through traditional, well-honed Anglo-Saxon treachery. Why tinker with what works? The method profits mostly the strongest, and the strongest, by 1914, was not Britain, but the USA. However, most British leadership kept on clinging to that hope (and still does today, as it’s one of the main arguments for Brexit).

In World War One, clearly, the British could see the USA feeding fascist, invading Germany with material to make ammunition with. France and Britain protested strenuously to Washington, for years. Without US help, the fascist, crime-against-humanity Kaiser regime, the so-called “Second Reich” would have collapsed quickly, and the democracies would have won. But those democracies, mostly Britain and France, had giant empire, and the USA wanted to acquire those empires.

Indeed it’s actually Britain who betrayed. Britain was headed by a newish PM, Chamberlain, who was trying to gain time to build an Air Force with new planes (Churchill had suggested to mass produce old planes, and that would have been a grievous error).

So Chamberlain had a proximal excuse (building an Air Force). However, Great Britain had none.  As the French Republic was trying to remove Britain from its natural inclination to be nice to, and constructive with, the Nazis. That inclination was perfidiously encouraged by the USA, which was keen to see Europe self destroyed. Fascism, injustice, plutocracy, racism, greed Uber Alles had all been inheritance and constructive ingredients of the British empire.  

I am aware that there are countless books on “Munich”. One I own is 1,000 pages or more. What I am writing here is the philosophical absolute essence of what happened.

Actually Britain had signed a military and economic treaty with the Nazis in 1935, which grossly violated the Versailles Treaty.

It was a complicated game: the Anglo-Americans, under the guidance of American plutocrats such as President FDR, were obsessed with destroying the French empire, but the French had not really noticed, although the relationship with Washington was frankly hostile since 1934. The British, in their arrogance, noticed too late they were been squeezed between the Nazis, and their de facto world imperialist allies, the Americans.

So France threaded carefully with Britain: the pro-Nazis there were thrown out, including the king. In winter 1939, the SPANISH Republic fell to the Nazis (represented by general Franco). At that point Great britain went fully on the french side, and accepted to be included in the addendum of the franco-Polish defense treaty.

But in summer 1938, it was too early, and British PM Chamberlain could not be persuaded by French PM Daladier (the Nazis, though, conceived then a great hatred for Daladier; my family sheltered his son from the Gestapo during the occupation; one of the rare non-Jews, out of the more than 100 people they saved the life of!).   

The French Republic, one should say in retrospect, should have gone to war alone with the Czechoslovak Republic in 1938. Indeed, in retrospect, the British army was worse than useless in 1940. In September 1939, the French started a lonely attack against the nazi “West Wall” (Siegfried line), with 40 divisions. It would take another month for the first British soldier to reach the continent.

Why do I say that Britain worse than useless in May 1940? The Second British armored division was supposed to stand in reserve behind the front, where the nazis broke through. As it was, it was not there. The only French B (Reserve, second rate) division which held the front at Sedan held back two Panzer Divisions. The third one broke through, after a bombing of the French division by the entire Luftwaffe, and suicide charges by Nazis engineers. There is little doubt that, had the british been where they were supposed to be, the front would not have broken (then, after a few days and the full might of the French and British armies and air force, they would have been destroyed like fishes in a barrel).

Anyway long story short: France should have given an ultimatum to Hitler in 1938. Militarily, France and Czechoslovakia could have handled Nazi Germany: The Czech fortifications were immensely strong. In 1940, half of the Nazi tanks were captured Czech tanks (1,000 out of 2,000).

The Nazis used more than 1,400 of these Czech tanks, and moreover derived a highly successful Panzerjagdt from it (a tank destroyer)

It’s not clear what the Anglo-Saxon would have decided to do: the US never gave an ultimatum to Hitler. However, by 1938, the Brits had understood they had to go to war with the Nazis.  

The French made two tragic mistakes, both of them having to do with being afraid not with war, but of what the rest of the world would think about the French Republic going to war and giving ultimatums.  

The first mistake was not going all out to war, when the Spanish Republic asked for help against the Nazis. That was in 1936. The Nazi German pilots then had three years to perfect their war making skills, and they caught French and British pilots, and their integration with ground troops, unprepared during ten crucial days in May 1940 (the democratic pilots learned, but too late to win the Battle of France).

The second mistake was for France to have betrayed the Czech Republic, one that France herself had set-up.

Conclusion: some time, it’s more important to do what’s right than to worry about what the PC crowd think. PC is apparently not just for Politically Correct, but Perfect Cretin.

Patrice Ayme’

We Think, Therefore We Predict As Scientists

September 16, 2017

Intelligence Produces Science & Previously Theories Thereof, In Monkeys, As It Does In Men:

Intelligence adapts to (known) circumstances, and, or predicts “successfully” the future. Adaptation and prediction is why intelligence evolved.

The adaptations and predictions intelligence brought were so successful, that the most intelligent animals reproduced more (thus brain size has been steadily augmenting among apex species, in the last 600 million years). The preceding was initially a polite answer to astrophysicist Ethan Siegel who wrote publicly that “Successfully predicting the future requires theoretical science”. No, it doesn’t, or then lemurs are theoretical scientists! Because lemurs can predict some elements of the future, just as human scientists can. Many a scientist shares comparable lack of awareness about the capability of other species to predict the future, too… Such arrogance is to the detriment of science in the public eye. Because the public, even if it doesn’t say so, smells a rat, when confronted to such statements, and rightly so.

To “successfully predict the future“, no “theoretical science” is required, or then “theoretical science” has been practiced for millions of years, by apes and their predecessors!

“Science” is what we know, for sure (or so we think). “Theoretical” science is guesswork, which will become “science” if it’s successful. That is, truthful. Philosophy is why and how the foundations of the theory, any theory… evolved.

I Think, Therefore I Eat

[But I don’t try to eat those frightening, nasty human super-predators, who are only trouble.]

Of course many people claim to know, to profess, even, plenty of haughty theories, whereas, in truth they are just paid to disseminate not just fake news, but false knowledge (think of many economists, and their “free market” lies, or “intellectuals” revering religions which brought the Dark Ages, as horrendously happened with Middle Age theology, and is still happening with Islamophilia). And there is a difference between false knowledge and the true knowledge new art and poetry can bring. Yes, art and poetry can be knowledge.

So yes, prehistoric men carrying fire in fire cages, or fire starting kits, were scientists: try it on your own, with what you find in nature, to realize how much knowledge is involved in basic fire husbandry. Ötzi, the 5200 years old neolithic person found in a melting glacier, carried a fire starting kit comprising more than a dozen different materials…All indispensable for fire starting, from dried mushrooms to flintstones.

Right, we know more, than our ancestors because our knowledge is more significant, deeper. We know fire is the chemical combination of an oxidizer and an oxidant, and we even know now how thermonuclear fire works, something even Albert Einstein had not figured out (as Ethan Siegel, him again, points out, as the thermonuclear fusion possibility computation crucially depends upon Quantum “Uncertainty”). But that does not mean we could start a fire in a wet, cold European winter and save ourselves from sleeping outside by scaring away Cave Bears with fire, from the local caves they also craved.

Indeed, left in a jungle to our own devices, we would quickly perish, from lack of… science, while prehistoric men would have seen only business as usual. Stumbling across that fact, professor Jared Diamond erroneously deduced, or at least, wrote, in his famous “Guns, Germs and Steel” that New Guineans were smarter than Europeans (!)

We shouldn’t be too arrogant, and believe we are so fundamentally different from Homo Erectus, a million years ago, learning to master basic skills such as clothing, firing, cooking, etc… Yes, we have more cerebral capability. But the task itself, science, knowledge, is not fundamentally different. Yes, there is a scientific method. But, even more fundamentally, there is a philosophical method. Either will be readily applied by wild, cerebrally advanced animals, even cephalopods. But, of course, certainly not in some human societies. In some societies values are inverted, to serve a few: those we call plutocracies. In particular they value stupidity more than intelligence. Precisely because if the individuals of such a society adapted and predicted the future, they may try to get rid of the satanic ones who exert power (“kratos”) on them.  

Arrogance, and even dominance, are marks of stupidity, except when directed at the stupid. Thus, by being arrogant and dominant, all too many scientists implicitly claim that non-”scientists” are stupid. If one really supports science, that’s real stupid, as science can’t exist without support of “non-scientists”. In truth, civilized people may not all be philosophically minded, but they are much more scientifically minded than is usually assumed.

So remember: although, relative to what it is today, science in Julius Caesar’s time may seem to have amounted to much, that doesn’t mean it was trivial. Some scientists may feel they are the geniuses who make science all what it can be, but they are delusional: it’s the society which makes the science (even the great mathematician Michael Atiyah became aware of this recently, and the necessity for mathematics to adapt accordingly… By making itself useful. However we are very far from it, considering the ridiculous obsession mathematicians have with infinity).

Scientists are just the organs of more or less scientifically minded societies. This is clearly what history shows. Few societies created science, or, more generally, really big ideas.  Such societies were, first, philosophically inclined to do so (for example Athens and the Ionian Greek cities at their apogees). The societies created the scientists, the scientists didn’t invent the societies. Trade did the rest.

And the first mood those societies should have is curiosity, an open mind, a lack of hubris, and a capability to predict possible futures. The downfall of Athens was caused by a shortness of openness (just like Sparta, Athens restricted citizenship to the point of drastically reducing population), an incapacity to predict the highly predictable fact that Athens, once besieged, or on the fleet, thus seriously overcrowded, would be attacked by a plague (Pericles bemoaned that he had predicted everything, but for that), and all of this rendered possible by an hubris so colossal that Athens soon engaged in war crimes (the case of Melos).

Thus scientists’ miens should display all these truthful characteristics of spiritual, mental openness, and humility. To claim only scientists can foresee the future, is flaunting just the exact opposite: it’s hubristic, closed-mind, and dumb. Not a good way to inspire youth with the search for truth. Nor is it a good way to inspire the political and social leaders, who, themselves are often little more than children (JFK, Obama, Macron; in the Middle Age, Europe was often led by outright children: Edward III was 16 years old when he took power, jailed his mom, and prepare to launch the “100” Years War).

Patrice Ayme’

Gibbon’s “Decline & Fall of Roman Empire” In Pluto Context

September 12, 2017

The British, French educated historian Edward Gibbon explained that he accomplished the work of “philosopher” in his justly famous “Decline and Fall of Rome” (DFR). 3,000 pages of dense text! Gibbon explained that the art of the “genius” historian was to select, as a “philosopher”, among a morass of facts “which are just facts”, those of higher significance. The irony, of course, is that his life’s work eschew highest significance, although he himself pulls the curtains for a brief instant, flashing the reality his work misses entirely…

To detect facts of the highest significance, and make them speak, is the fundament of the art of highest thinking. (This is true for all of philosophy, including of the natural sort, as Albert Einstein pointed out.).

Under Trajan, the Empire was at greatest MILITARY & territorial extent, when Gibbon starts his story. Later, the empire would extent much further, spiritually speaking through the concept of “Christian Republic”.

Trajan also introduced welfare and taxes on the richest. He could have gone further, but bemoaned he was too old to emulate Alexander (who didn’t introduce welfare and taxes on the richest, BTW…) Indeed he promptly died and his successor Hadrian was not cut from the same cloth, and precipitously evacuated much of the empire Trajan had conquered. (The map above shows clearly that the German barbarians were too close from the heart of the empire, just north of Italy, and sure enough, Marcus Aurelius spent his reign repelling them there; his ignorant son, Commodus withdrew further, Hadrian style…).

Under Augustus, legions reached Ethiopia and Yemen, but Augustus was full of avarice, and the notion of a world civilization didn’t appeal to him. In any case, he had none to propose. So he pulled the legions back from Germany, Africa and the Indian Ocean shore, and left a will, read in the Senate, advocating a shrunken empire, the exact opposite notion from his great uncle, Julius Caesar….

The “Decline and Fall of Rome” embraced not just the Roman empire from 100 CE to 1453 CE, but also Islam, and the Crusades. Gibbon, rightly, wrote an entire history of the West, from 100 CE, to 1500 CE!

Indeed, the idea that Rome survived the Decline and Fall of Rome was not a new observation: the empire of the Franks, the Imperium Francorum, was, de facto, Rome: it used the latest refurbished (Justinian legal code) Roman law, etc. It could be argued that the Frankish Empire was more Roman than Constantinople, because it spoke Latin, not Greek. By 800 CE, the Imperium Francorum proclaimed itself  “RENOVATION of The Roman Empire”..

Thus, then, of course, Gibbon, by his own implicit admission, should have called his book: The Decline, Fall and Resurrection of Rome! When Gibbon was writing his book, the British empire was much larger than the Roman empire, and arguably better organized and centralized. The French empire was not far behind, and, by his own admission, Gibbon recognizes that the Russian empire dwarfed Rome, in some sense.

Something even stranger is that Gibbon recognizes the obvious: most of the Roman Empire was created under the Republic. And it was because the soldiers defended their rights and their properties. Whereas, in the period Gibbon considers, when the Republic has been replaced by what he calls a “monarchy”, soldiers were motivated by greed, obedience and “religion”.i

Thus, however broadly he encompassed the history of the West after 100 CE, Gibbon could only miss the true cause of the corruption which he bemoaned, and caused the decline and fall of the Roman State.

But there was no choice: for 8 years a Member of Parliament (where he was “mute”), Gibbon enjoyed fame and clout in the British plutocracy. Gibbon could not sing the praises of the Republic. All the more as he made clear, in 1793 CE, that however admirable French artillery was, the valor of French soldiers deserved a better cause (or words to this effect). Gibbon had seen the conspiracy and alliance of European plutocrats attacking the French Republic. Gibbon had actually seen a battle (and was part of a militia ready to defend England against a French invasion, a rather ironical matter, as it was France which was invaded by everybody from the gang of all “aristocrats” united, not England!.

However deliciously informative reading him is, Edward Gibbon was deeply biased. So was all of history, ever since “politics” was founded. “Politics” means “looking at the City-State”. That look was not friendly, because most Greek City-States had democratic characters lost, ever since. To the sort of regimes Gibbon admired… and was a part of.

Gibbon didn’t draw the obvious conclusion from the sketch, in a few lines which he made of the Roman Republic, or how the Roman Empire came to be. His entire “Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire” is biased, from context alone. From the universe which he chose to consider.

Today the British Parliament voted 326 to 290 the previously named “Great Repeal Bill” overturning the law from 1972 infeodating  British law to European law (by accepting the supremacy of the latter). This displaces sovereignty on 12,000 laws.

It’s as Mick Jagger put it in an excellent video “England lost”. In it a dishevelled English gentleman loses his mind from imagined frights, and dashed hopes to turn England into Singapore. At the end, the Briton runs straight into the sea, then stops, dazzled. A black man helps pull him out. A terse blonde 14 year old.girl tells him:”where do you think you could go?..pull yourself together”.

Clearly, by the time of Gibbon, the delusion was going strong. We don’t harbor it here. To understand the Decline and Fall of Rome is to understand the decline and fall of the RESPUBLICA Romana. It’s the Republic and its republicans which built the empire, not the evil baboons the English plutocrat Gibbon is fascinated by…

Patrice Ayme’

Why The ROMAN STATE COLLAPSED (Part I; Plus Contemporary Analogy)

September 9, 2017

The climate is, and will, collapse incredibly fast, at some point in the near future. Same, potentially, for civilization.

The hints of climate collapse are in, they are piling all over. Irma, a hurricane packing recorded gusts of 363 kilometers an hour appeared. It got enormous: 330,000 square kilometers. At the same time, hurricane Katia attacked the Caribbean coast of Mexico. Behind Irma, Jose, a category 4 hurricane, nearly as nasty as Irma. When things collapse, they collapse fast: think of the proverbial Twin Towers of “9/11” twisting, turning and leaning, and then down in 8 seconds. This is what happens during a transition to a new equilibrium. 

Collapses of civilizations have happened many times before. The most famous case, by far, is Rome. Roman society was the most complex, and the one most similar to the world civilization we have today. It collapsed, and it was first a psychological collapse.

Rome collapsed amazingly fast. Early in 379 CE, there was a refugee crisis, caused by a million Goths (including women and children) begging to enter the empire. The empire was at the height of its powers. By 406 CE, the empire had collapsed. The one million Goths  had been allowed to enter the Roman empire. Under the condition of coming, unarmed. They cheated. Disaster ensued.

By 400 CE, though, a German Confederation, the Franks, had been put in charge of insuring the defense of the two Germania and the richest Roman province, Gallia (Gaul). In 406 CE, the Frankish curtain broke when the Rhine surprisingly froze, and many tiny German nations broke through Gaul, and even Spain and North Africa. By 410 CE, the city of Rome herself had been conquered by the Goths.

The Vandals, with 40,000 warriors, went quickly all the way to the Roman province of Africa, where they established a maritime empire, comprising the Balearic Islands, Corsica, Sardinia, Sicily, Malta (439 CE)… 

The Great Barbarian Invasions By Tiny German Nations Were Preceded By Roman Mental Collapse of the “Antifa” Type. Situation in 435 CE, after 29 Years of Invasions.

The Romans tried to dislodge the Vandals many times, but failed. In 455 CE, the Vandals sacked Rome (their fleet just went up the Tiber). Having seized control of the sea, the Vandals were able to control and cut the grain supply to the city of Rome (and much grain came from North Africa). This starved Rome, and the population collapsed. The Vandal empire would last more than a century, until an army sent there by Roman emperor Justinian defeated them.

By the late Fifth Century, Italy had fallen under the control of the Ostrogoths (who were relatively benign, except they killed the president of the Roman Senate, the philosopher Boethius; the king of the Ostrogoths had believed, erroneously, some lies about Boethius, he later bemoaned).

Emperor Justinian, the same one I just mentioned, decided to grab back Italy, and, in particular, Rome. The city was lost and taken several times. Ultimately, Oriental Romans won, and the Ostrogoths got annihilated (I say “Oriental Romans” because “Byzantine”, is an erroneous concept and word I try not to use: the Romans were calling themselves Romans, not “Byzantines”; the Romans had selected Byzantium as Oriental Capital; Byzantium, an ancient Greek city, had not selected them). However being besieged many times destroyed the city of Rome. Especially, most of her aqueducts. It was said that there was just one individual observed living in the ruins.

In ancient historiography, the Roman empire is described as declining, and then falling. However, the bias may have been introduced by the Christians, who controlled which books were worth saving. Christians hated (the) Greco-Roman civilization (which had created them), and were crucial to its demise, with the supine mentality which they promoted. So they committed a crime, and had interest to present the victim, civilization, as so decrepit, they had nothing to do with it. In truth, their fanaticism helped bring down a thriving civilization.

This is a clear bias, not supported by recent archeology. Archeology shows that the Roman State was actually richer, and more powerful, just before it collapsed. On the face of it, the army was the largest Rome ever had. Roma was much powerful in 379 CE than it had been, facing Hannibal. By a factor of ten. Rome should have been able to rise armies numbering millions in 379 CE (because a ten, or twenty times smaller Rome was able to rise armies numbering hundreds of thousands, facing Hannibal, or the German invasion around 110 BCE, by the Cimbri, Teutones and Ambrones!) The difference between the Punic and Cimbrian wars, when the Roman Republic faced annihilation, and the Germanic invasions of the Fifth Century, when it didn’t (the Germans being then half-civilized and anxious to become Romans), was mood. The Roman mood.

So what happened? How come that mightiest Roman army ever could be defeated, again and again and again, or shrink from battle? The Goth refugees had done whatever was needed (such as prostituting their wives and daughters, on an industrial scale) to keep their weapons. Mistreated by corrupt local Roman official, so corrupt that they didn’t take basic military precautions, the Goths, ably led by a charismatic leader, Fritigern, rebelled.

The Collapse of the Roman empire was sudden. This is the situation around 440 CE.

Emperor Valens rushed from Mesopotamia with the Oriental Roman field army. Thanks to an hubris reminiscent of that French generals around May 13, 1940, Valens rushed its dehydrated, exhausted army into battle on a hot August day, without having figured out where the mighty Gothic cavalry was.  The Occidental Roman army chief of staff, the Frankish general Richomeres  advised Valens to wait until the Occidental army arrived. The Oriental Roman field army was annihilated, Valens killed (in unclear circumstances). Richomeres kept discipline and saved part of the force (he would later become head of the army in the Orient, magister militum per Orientem, and a Consul).

We have some of the ingredients of the fall of Rome there: dictatorship by the emperor not listening to advice, and most of the top military genius of the empire having to do with Frankish generals.

The Roman State was severely defeated at Adrianopolis in 379 CE. That battle, against the Goths, was reminiscent of the massacre of Cannae, 600 years before. Cannae was a tremendous Roman defeat originating straight from Hannibal’s genius. Roman legions, including 60 Senators found themselves so compressed by Hannibal’s army of mercenaries, that they couldn’t fight: they had been drawn to the center by Hannibal himself, at the head of his Gallic troops. Adrianopolis was more of the same. However, whereas Hannibal was crafty at Cannae, the Romans were stupid at Adrianopolis.

After Cannae, the Romans rose another two large armies, and Scipio “Africanus” landed the main one in Africa, next to Carthage. . After Adrianopolis, the Romans didn’t rise a new army so much as they showed Constantinople to the Gothic king, who was mesmerized. The Goth thus decided to make peace. And to celebrate so much, that he died from it (his successor honored the accord).  

Clearly, by the end of the Fourth Century, the immensely wealthy empire, much richer than Rome six centuries earlier, was able to rise armies (hence the systematic recourse to Frankish armies, forces and general; even emperor Constantine had a crucial battle won by the Frankish general Bonitus; another Frankish general, Arbogast, was emperor in all but name, as he tried a secular, laic counter-coup).

This lack of armies explains why the empire of more than 60 millions was defeated by tiny German armies (the Goths had by far the largest army, around 100,000 men).

Gibbon would perhaps point out that the Christian mentality was antagonistic to war. Right. Actually the Christian bishops were heading the empire by 400 CE (this government of bishops had started under Gratian, when he became weird after Adrianopolis; maybe he was weird because he had to name Theodosius emperor of the Orient; Gratian was barely 20, Theodosius, 33, and accomplished, however his father had been executed earlier for high treason…).

The Late Roman empire had become a very strange place. While the Germans threatened to roam all over the place, with their own Sharia (although they were Aryan Christian, but for the Franks, who were obdurate Pagans), the bishops declared that murderous highwaymen should not be executed (so the roads became impassible).

All this weirdness was there to hide the main fact: the Roman plutocrats prefered experiencing German invasions to paying taxes to the Roman State, to feed the prodigious army Rome could have had, and the Roman plutocrats had the means to NOT pay taxes by influencing people and blocking others. They married the invaders, and that was it.

Does this remind you of today?

It should!

Meanwhile, Trump operated a 180 degrees (long announced). He announced a deal with his new-found friends “Nancy and Chuck”. The buxom Nancy Pelosi has headed the Democrats in Congress since before 2006 (when she acquired control of Congress); “Chuck” is the head of the Democratic Senators. So the rising of the US debt ceiling was passed (it had been attached to 20 billion dollars heading to the relief of Houston). I wonder if all those who called racist whoever had a nice word about some aspects of Trump, will now direct their fury towards “Nancy and Chuck”. Probably not: too complicated for their simple minds.

To come back to Late Imperial Rome, all the wealthiest families had a bishop in their ranks: Christianism was a smokescreen for plutocracy. Among plutocratic families, Christian propaganda was basic civic service. By superficially embracing Christianism, and imposing it deeply, plutocracy made We The People into We the Sheeple.

The empire, in tatters, rose again thanks to the Franks, but the destruction caused by the collapse was beyond a force 8 hurricane. Because the minds, the rational, republican, democratic culture, had collapsed so entirely.

It would take seven centuries for civilization to rise higher. Even then, it got poisoned again by the second plutocratic wave known, with misleading semantics, as the “Feudal” system. That rose again with a second Christianization wave known for the Crusades, the Inquisition, and the Religious Wars,and various terrors, which wrecked Europe for another eight centuries after 1026 CE (when burnings for “heresy” got launched again, after centuries without.)

More than 200 potential or known causes for the Decline and Fall of Rome have been listed. The plutocratic explanation therein suggested implies them all, so it is the master explanation.

Why was the collapse of the Roman state so thorough and so fast? Contemplate the present North Korean crisis. Suppose it would evolved in the way most unfavorable to civilization: Kim threatens the West, atom bomb a few cities, like Los Angeles, New York, Tokyo, Paris, London, and then one makes a treaty with him, and North Korean and Jihadists become the overlords, under special laws applying to them alone. Meanwhile the “antifa” are in charge of the justice, police and military systems and impose to not fight crime in any form.

This is roughly what happened to the Roman state, and it happened within a few years. At the time, some Romans were indignant, and tried to react, to prevent the Decline and Fall of the Roman State. Maximus in Britain led his legions into Gaul, defeated (next to Paris) and killed emperor Gratian (in Lyon), because Gratian was roaming around dressed like a Scythian, and had put the Catholic bishops in power. Maximus became Augustus, and Theodosius had to live with him. Yet, the rot within average minds was already too deep.

The facts above are mostly ignored in the major universities, because such facts would disrupt them by disrupting their major sponsor, the plutocratic system, which feeds so well the top university leaders (they earn up to 2 million dollars a year in the USA). Still we, humble philosophers, shall obstinately preach the truths, just because they are there, and need to be conquered even more than the highest imaginable mountains.

Patrice Ayme

Should Present-Day Catholicism Be Made Unlawful?

July 29, 2017

Catholicism, as practiced in the past, would clearly be unlawful today: all the great leaders of Christianism of  five centuries ago, would be condemned to live in prison, but for those who would end their lives in psychiatric asylum. Should they resist by force, their fighters would have been eliminated as if they were the worst Jihadists, defending holocausts, or Aztec warriors, defending cannibalism.  

Catholicism, in its original form, its ancient form, its Salafist form, prescribed many atrocities (later carbon-copied by Islam). I will concentrate here just on a particularly inhuman prescription, sexism. Sexism is against nature, because the human species has evolved with little difference between males and females. This goes at the root of what it means to be human.

Catholicism says women are inferior creatures. This hurtful outrage is an ultra-violent contradiction of common human decency, common sense, science, human ethology, and human rights. Mass organizations violating both science and human rights should be outlawed.  

Catholic churchmen are still free to proselytize their contempt, not to say, hatred of women. Women can’t become priests, bishops, cardinals or popes: they are clearly viewed by the Catholic Church as inferior, misleading, depraved creatures. Why should such preaching be legal? 

Tyrant Constantine front and left, directs the Nicaea Council 325 CE, as seen in the 16 C….

To be fair, this religious misogyny started before Catholicism. Catholicism was an invention of the Roman Tyrant Constantine at the Council of Nicaea, in 325 CE (presently located in Islamizing Turkey). Constantine, born at York in England, son of his father, a “Caesar”, was a psychopath who conquered the entire Roman empire. Constantine killed his nephew, his wife and his highly successful son, just because he could. That was enough qualifications for Constantine to be made a saint by the Orthodox Church.

The earliest Christian writer is known as the so-called “Saint” Paul. I put “Saint” in quote, unquote, because in my religion no sexist pig is a saint. Saint Paul was a sexist, man-obsessed pig. I have nothing against homosexuals of the male gender, as long as they don’t disparage woman. But Saint Paul did. 

The Apostle Paul wrote that the “husband is head” and “wives, submit“, and that he was divinely inspired to write what he wrote… Catholic groups diverge in their interpretation of the following passage. Saint Paul wrote:

“But I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God. Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head. But every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head—it is the same as having her head shaved. For if a woman does not cover her head, she might as well have her hair cut off; but if it is a disgrace for a woman to have her hair cut off or her head shaved, then she should cover her head. A man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. For man did not come from woman, but woman from man; neither was man created for woman, but woman for man.[1Cor 11:3–9]

In the first seven centuries after emperor Constantine, the self-described “13th Apostle” and certified bloody monster of the tyrannical type, priests could marry: Catholicism was overviewed by the Franks, who attached a lot of importance to living like Pagans, and (relatively) non-sexist Germans. The Franks had reinterpreted Catholicism their way. However, by 1026 CE, for the first time in centuries, the Catholic church was able to execute heretics.

What had changed? What had allowed Catholicism to draped itself in, and drip with, blood? Why the relapse into mass murdering theocratic fascism? Plutocracy unbound. The rise of plutocracy, self-described as “aristocracy”: hereditary positions of the wealthiest and the mightiest needed a mood to nurture their capture of civilization, and they had to justify that by the fascist Judeo-Christian god and His torturous, sexist ways.

At that point, the men who viewed women as objects of natural sexual interest were discouraged to join the Catholic Church. Men who preferred men were prefered. And naturally men who love children as sex objects.

So here we are: the Catholic hierarchy is stuffed with sex pedophiles. And the Catholic Church can’t deny this, lest it denies itself.

The present Pope talks a big talk, but he is, at the very least, sympathetic to pedophiles. A fact. For a millennium, the Catholic Church has induced its professionals to approach children, with love (pedo-philia, literally) rather than approach adult women, with love. Thus all too many professional Catholics came to view children as sex objects. And getting away with it. A striking example is the right hand man of the present Pope, now back in Australia to face damning charges… Francis I gives moral lessons to entire planet, but socialized for years with an outrageous pedophile.

As the New York Magazine puts it in “The Pope’s Pedophile?”By Andrew Sullivan:

“Well into Pope Francis’s pontificate, one of his closest aides, the third-highest official in the Catholic Church, Cardinal George Pell, has now been credibly accused of several acts of sexual assault, including one of rape. Australian police have concluded that the evidence they have is sufficient to move forward, even in cases that happened long ago… A cloud has hung over Pell since he was an Episcopal vicar in a parish in the 1970s that has been described as a “pedophile’s paradise and a child’s nightmare. A full 15 years ago, Pell was accused of molesting a 12-year-old boy but when the church investigated, a retired Supreme Court justice found that there wasn’t enough evidence, even though the victim appeared to be “speaking honestly from actual recollection.” A year later, Pope John Paul II made Pell a cardinal. Several new alleged victims spoke out in a book published only last month. In 2015, Australia’s Channel 9 ran a 60 Minutes segment that can only be called horrifying. In it, one of Francis’s own appointees to investigate sex abuse, Peter Saunders, described Pell’s record on sexual abuse as “almost sociopathic.” Pell had a “catalogue of denials … a catalogue of denigrating people, of acting with callousness,” Saunders said on camera. “I would go as far to say that I consider him to be quite a dangerous individual…

The notorious case of the founder of the Legion of Christ, Marcial Maciel, comes to mind. Protected by Pope John Paul II, coddled by Benedict XVI, he was also defended by an array of theological arch-conservatives as a paragon of virtue… It comes as no surprise, for example, that Pell has upheld, like Maciel, a highly conservative theology on sexuality — which was why he was so favored by John Paul II and Benedict XVI. He opposed the use of condoms to stop AIDS in Africa, refused to give communion to openly gay people, campaigned strenuously against marriage equality, and described the church sex-abuse scandal as not a function of minor abuse and cover-up but of allowing homosexuals to be priests (a ban on gay seminarians remains formally in place). In his own words: “80 percent of the abuse is with young boys. So I mean it’s obviously connected with the problem of homosexuality … We’ve got to see that [homosexuality] is not tolerated amongst clergy and religious orders.” To which I have to echo David Ridsdale: “Fuck you, George, and everything you stand for.”

What I cannot understand is why Pope Francis chose to advance this man under this cloud so high up the hierarchy. If Pell is found guilty, Francis will have advanced an accused abuser of children to the highest echelon in the Vatican. Far from cleaning the church of this evil, he will have contaminated it at its very apex. That’s why this case is indeed a watershed for Catholicism and Francis himself. If Francis can turn a blind eye to this, we can trust no one.”

What is there, not to understand? It’s in plain sight! The Catholic Church is intrinsically dangerous: most Catholics, with the possible exception of Saint Martin, Saint Francis and a few others, are toxic for civilization, because they abuse not just little boys, but reason. As Emperor Julian had diagnosed around 360 CE, Catholicism was very dangerous to civilization, just because of that point ( and basically all the great social advances ascribed to Roman Catholicism originated in Rome, not Catholicism, which piggy-backed on Rome). Catholicism was basically PC, Political Correctness, gone self-sanctifying and lethal. Many of the Saints of Catholicism were mass-criminally insane (example Saint Bernard, author of the Second Crusade, more Pope than the Pope Himself, and from a Pluto family, to boot; same for the demented Saint Louis, author of more insane texts than the Marquis de Sade, but not meant to be fiction, but all too real threats…)

Sexism is not legal. Sexism should not be preached. Private conversation is one thing, public address, another. Preaching sexism should be unlawful.

The reasons to crack down now on Catholicism, Orthodoxy and Judaism are multiple. An obvious reason is that, each time perverse religions dwell in hyper-sexism, the practitioners of these nasty primitive faiths point at Christianism. Islamists, in particular, claim that sexism  Naive philosophers such as Michel Onfray make the situation worse by calling our civilization “Judeo-Christian”. That leaves us no choice, but to carpet bomb “Judeo-Christianism” into smithereens.

A more advanced reason is that we need humanity to be as intelligent as possible, as soon as possible: the easiest way to do that is to insure women have the same access to education, and to the motivation to acquire education, as men. Mostly women mostly educate children, early on, keep that in mind: a sexist society is necessarily a more stupid society than it otherwise would be, absent the sexism.

Still an even more overwhelming reason is that we have entered the age of reason. It’s reason, or die.

A hint: the young thermonuclear cannibal in North Korea. The irrationality of Catholicism, which views, half of humanity as inferior (same as (Islamism), and enforces that vision, should not be tolerated, but eradicated.

Everybody needs somebody to love. The Catholic Church says that men should not love women. The Pope, Francis, says this. His collaborators, not to call them accomplices, are left to love small children, because small children are all they have around, aside from each other and their perverse ideology. Enough. You want to fight Islamism? Fighting the abuses of Catholicism may be the easiest way to start doing so.

Mass irrationality implementing stupidity is not just deeply inhuman. It implies the end of intelligence. Perhaps of intelligence in the galaxy. This is not just about us. Let’s make sexist mass ideologies seriously preached unlawful: at some point civilization has to progress.

Patrice Ayme’

EXTREMES INSTRUCT MIND, and Man, The Extreme Animal

July 15, 2017

Usually, when thinking of man, one thinks of something noble, higher, ponderate, endowed with Roman “gravitas”, wise. To put it in one expression: Homo Sapiens.

However, where does all this wisdom come from? Experiments! And how, why, would one experiment? By going crazy! Craziness, and a love for extremes. Why? Because: Extremes instructs.

Wingsuit Flier Above French Alps. The rocky twin tower below the flier is the Drus, where yours truly made a semi-demented first ascent (on the other side). I had been a bit riled, after being nearly wiped out by the biggest rock avalanche I ever saw. However the entire pillar collapsed from greenhouse warming a few years later… Demonstrating the lightness of being even with the heaviest mountains.

Going to extremes is how science is made. Every paradigm shattering experiment in physics consists into forcing nature into an extreme apparatus (be it a telescope, microscope, Stern-Gerlach device, cyclotron, or forcing a virus into circumstances which weaken it, until it can be injected for vaccination, etc.).

Going to extremes happen even in mathematics: there, researchers typically play first with baby examples (which are extreme in the sense of being extremely simple, or extremely computable, etc.). For these extremes, they excavate general principles that they then rework in a general theory. (For example, the general theory of curved spaces, pre-Euclid, and before the invention of connection theory by Levi-Civita, assumed spaces with constant curvature, such as the surface of the Earth; that was extreme, in the sense of extremely simple.)

So here we are, and our power has exceeded our planet. To save our environment, we need to extent it through the galaxy, commensurate to our power. We can’t dial back power: our earthly environment, which we have already mauled, will be the first to succumb. So all speed forward, beyond all the last frontiers…

Extreme behaviors have always characterized man. Because we experiment, and experiments are, by definition, risky.  “Per” meant  risk, initially. To engage in risky behavior, we need extreme passion, like the heroes of Homer.

“Plus Oultre!” as Charles Quint put it in his native French: More Beyond!

Science itself is a love of extreme: the meta-motivation of science is to go beyond whatever was figured out prior.    

Experienced extreme-sports enthusiasts are often not reckless, nor do they have some sort of Freudian death wish. Instead, “older” extreme athletes — those who are past their mid-20s — exercise deep care proportional to the high risk involved by the art they specialize in. The analogy with science is striking. Most practitioners of extremely dangerous sports are highly intelligent people, methodological and systematic. They spend years studying the environment and the mechanics involved in order to make it as safe as it possibly can be, in that general framework of extreme danger.

And generally, they have a an extreme goal in mind. The French specialist of wingsuits, who launched the modern version of the sport, wanted to achieve controlled wingsuit landings (he died in Hawai’i, probably from confusion in a jump to resulting from jet lag).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kp3YLdhraPw

It is often said, and observed, that humans can be, or are, evil. This is caused, in part, by the love of extremes, the love of experiment.

So is it the love of understanding which pushes to extremes, or the love of extremes which pushes towards understanding? That’s a chicken and egg problem: they evolved together, and are not really distinguishable, being both unavoidable parts of the same mechanism.

This also explains why top thinkers all too often get hated and ridiculously molested: as per their art, they are forced to be, in some ways, extreme. At least, relative to the commons. The founder of cynic philosophy Diogenes of Sinope and his admirer the extremely clever Alexander the Great understood this perfectly well.

Of course the New York Times does not. It does not want to. That plutocratic media calls “provocateurs” “hate mongers”, and explain they have to be violently censored to prevent “torment”! Says the NYT: “By all means, we should have open conversations and vigorous debate about controversial or offensive topics. But we must also halt speech that bullies and torments. From the perspective of our brain cells, the latter is literally a form of violence.”

By all means”? Really? Was not the point of the NYT the exact opposite?

I do agree that speech can be violence. However, to explicitly point at people who “provoke” thoughts, and accuse them of causing “torment” is not understanding that we gain insight from extremes.

Thus, the New York Times’ theory of censoring all my comments was grounded in a conspiratorial theory to avoid inflicting torment on plutocrats.

Some will say I am incoherent: I condemned “thought crimes” long ago, and asked for a “Minister of Truth” (underlying the minister of Justice). However the difference are significant: the Qur’an calls to kill some category of people (the Bible does the same, but less… Actually Qur’an refers approvingly to the death sentence against homosexuals in the Bible). If that’s preached as a part of the religion, which it is, stricto sensu, that’s incitation to murder. If done to children it adds child abuse, child endangerment, child pornography, corruption of the youth, etc.

Whereas the New York Times has actively censored scholars who disagree on Quantitative Easing, the capture of politics by plutocracy, calling Islamophobia racism, or whether Christianism terror caused the decline and fall of the Roman State.

The problem with avoiding confrontation in the guise of comfort, is that extremes instruct. No confrontation, no instruction. The New York Times affects not to understand that (in truth it’s just serving the multibillionaire plutocrats who own it, and are hateful of all those who disparage their status).

A young Egyptian yesterday swam to a resort. There, he killed by stabbing, two German tourists. Captured, he recognized that he had “espoused the ideas of Jihadism”. Jihadism in the sense of the literal Qur’an is a vicious ideology incompatible with civilization. Literal Koranic Jihadism is an example of a mentality espousing ideas and practices revealed to be too extreme when they lead to kill innocent people.

Absent real killing and injuring of people, anything should go in the realm of ideas. Fiction literature and movies (even documentaries) are all about letting imagination roam.  

And it better. Because only ever more true ideas will save humanity, and those are born at very high temperature, so high old mental automatisms can melt the erroneous past in a fiery embrace.

Extreme behaviors are us. Including the worst, they are necessary to think forward and anew. There lays survival, and nowhere else.

Patrice Ayme’  

The Purpose of Life: Harari, Gates, Yours Truly…

July 6, 2017

Get a GRRIP: Gates, Harari, Homo Deus, Debunked & Amplified:

Abstract: After describing a bit the work of Harari, who just sold 3 million books in China alone, we focus on what Bill Gates below sees as Harari’s main gist. Then I present my own version of the purpose of human life. I expand on the notion of raw realism, what I call GRRIP, the driver of human evolution.

***

Yuval Noah Harari, a professor at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, writes the sort of books I would have like to have written myself, because of the many statements highly compatible with my philosophy. However, the gentleman is not the deepest form of thinker there is, so I still think my writings have meaning… Moreover, he and Bill Gates, who gives his opinion below, claim that the “purpose of life” consists into serving a superior class. I sort of agree, as long as said class is superior thinking, not a tiny minority of greedy individuals… 

Harari seesm to embrace what I believe is the reality one should all embrace, to optimize collective survival and happiness GRRIP: Grave Raw Reality Inevitable Principle: Raw Reality is a Grave thing, but it can’t be be avoided, so we may as well consider it to be a Principle (just like God is a Principle of power, GRRIP has even more power, see the White Phosphorus below…) As an Israeli, Harari lives in a grave reality, and Gates, as we will see, believes hard to find a purpose in life if all children have a nice life (I agree that’s a surprising point of view, especially considering Gates views himself as charity prone, not to say charitable!)

My take on it? The purpose of life is a vast generalization of what Bill Gates is trying to say. Starting from GRRIP, I conclude that:

THE MORE WE HOLD TO DEAR LIFE, THE MORE MEANING WE ARE PROVIDED WITH! This is why people like to do dangerous & crazy things! They are addicted to meaning! (Some may say that Camus opined a bit like that in his famous “Myth of Sisyphus“. Except Sisyphus is doing a boring task, whereas human beings in full are too excited by danger to be bored; I am not exactly recommending this, to live a life of danger and terror, I just say that this is the circumstances in which our species evolved, and thus, our brains become fully functional only then, and when such an environment is provided…)

***

Harari Makes Statements I Have Made Forever:

“In the 300 years of the crucifixion of Christ to the conversion of Emperor Constantine, polytheistic Roman emperors initiated no more than four general persecutions of Christians. Local administrators and governors incited some anti-Christian violence of their own. Still, if we combine all the victims of all these persecutions, it turns out that in these three centuries the polytheistic Romans killed no more than a few thousand Christians. In contrast, over the course, of the next 1,500 years, Christians slaughtered Christians by the millions, to defend slightly different interpretations of the religion of love and compassion.”

Yuval Noah Harari, קיצור תולדות האנושות 

White Phosphorus Exploding Out Of A Shell Over Mosul, June 2, 2017. The Anti-Islamist Coalition Is Fighting Literal Abrahamism, An Intrinsically Let’s-Kill-Our-Children-For-Our-Boss religion. Hence the necessity to use pretty ugly weapons.

The reason for Christianism was to make average people into sheep so that Roman Catholic emperors and their class could terrorize and exploit the 99%. As Voltaire, himself definitively a part of the .1%, as he was personal friend of Louis XV, asserted:  

“Voltaire said about God that ‘there is no God, but don’t tell that to my servant, lest he murder me at night’. Hammurabi would have said the same about his principle of hierarchy, and Thomas Jefferson about human rights. Homo sapiens has no natural rights, just as spiders, hyenas and chimpanzees have no natural rights. But don’t tell that to our servants, lest they murder us at night.”

Yuval Noah Harari, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind

[Nietzsche basically went lyrical on this idea already found in Voltaire, a century later. Let’s notice this in passing… So much for Friedrich’s originality…]

“Nothing captures the biological argument better than the famous New Age slogan: ‘Happiness begins within.’ Money, social status, plastic surgery, beautiful houses, powerful positions – none of these will bring you happiness. Lasting happiness comes only from serotonin, dopamine and oxytocin.” (Yuval Noah Harari, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind.)

And right history does not just teach the future, but feeds the imagination:

“This is the best reason to learn history: not in order to predict the future, but to free yourself of the past and imagine alternative destinies. Of course this is not total freedom – we cannot avoid being shaped by the past. But some freedom is better than none.”

Yuval Noah Harari, Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow

***

Contrarily To What Harari Claims, Life Has A Scientific Meaning, However Modest:  

Of course I understand, and sort of approve, the following assertion:

“As far as we can tell from a purely scientific viewpoint, human life has absolutely no meaning. Humans are the outcome of blind evolutionary processes that operate without goal or purpose. Our actions are not part of some divine cosmic plan, and if planet earth were to blow up tomorrow morning, the universe would probably keep going about its business as usual. As far as we can tell at this point, human subjectivity would not be missed. Hence any meaning that people inscribe to their lives is just a delusion.”  (Yuval Noah Harari, Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind.)

A superior philosophical attitude requires more modesty about what the universe is really up to: suppose that it turns out we are the only civilization in the entire observable universe (as observed, so far). Would that make us delusional, if we attribute importance to ourselves? Arguably not!

“Purely scientific viewpoint”: for me, science is what is known with certainty. The purpose of life has not been studied enough to even guess what it could be to ponder some of its elements as certainties, this way or that. The purpose of life does not have any scientific meaning, but for one point which can’t be disputed: we are attached to it. All of use, but a few in extreme pain (physical or psychological).

As far as we can tell… human life has absolutely no meaning”??? Why does Harari insists life has no meaning? “Purely scientific”? So occupiers can kill the occupied in peace?

***

Bill Gates read Harari and found him to his taste. The reason why will be unveiled. In both cases, to put it rather grossly, both life off the hog (Palestinians in one case, the world planet on the other). Here is Billy Boy:

What gives our lives meaning? And what if one day, whatever gives us meaning went away—what would we do then?

I’m still thinking about those weighty questions after finishing Homo Deus, the provocative new book by Yuval Noah Harari.

Melinda and I loved Harari’s previous book, Sapiens, which tries to explain how our species came to dominate the Earth. It sparked conversations over our dinner table for weeks after we both read it…Harari’s new book is as challenging and readable as Sapiens…

Homo Deus argues that the principles that have organized society will undergo a huge shift in the 21st century… the things that have shaped society—what we measure ourselves by—have been some combination of religious rules about how to live a good life, and more earthly goals like getting rid of sickness, hunger, and war. We have organized to meet basic human needs: being happy, healthy, and in control of the environment around us. Taking these goals to their logical conclusion, Harari says humans are striving for “bliss, immortality, and divinity.”

What would the world be like if we actually achieved those things? This is not entirely idle speculation. War and violence are at historical lows and still declining. Advances in science and technology will help people live much longer and go a long way toward ending disease and hunger.

Here is Harari’s most provocative idea: As good as it sounds, achieving the dream of bliss, immortality, and divinity could be bad news for the human race. He foresees a potential future where a small number of elites upgrade themselves through biotechnology and genetic engineering, leaving the masses behind and creating the godlike species of the book’s title; where artificial intelligence “knows us better than we know ourselves”; and where these godlike elites and super-intelligent robots consider the rest of humanity to be superfluous…

He argues that humanity’s progress toward bliss, immortality, and divinity is bound to be unequal—some people will leap ahead, while many more are left behind. I agree that, as innovation accelerates, it doesn’t automatically benefit everyone. The private market in particular serves the needs of people with money and, left to its own devices, often misses the needs of the poor. But we can work to close that gap and reduce the time it takes for innovation to spread. For example, it used to take decades for lifesaving vaccines developed in the rich world to reach the poor. Now—thanks to efforts by pharmaceutical companies, foundations, and governments—there are cases where that lag time is less than a year. We should try to narrow the gap even more, but the larger point is clear: Inequity is not inevitable.

In addition, in my view, the robots-take-over scenario is not the most interesting one to think about. It is true that as artificial intelligence gets more powerful, we need to ensure that it serves humanity and not the other way around. But this is an engineering problem—what you could call the control problem. And there is not a lot to say about it, since the technology in question doesn’t exist yet.

I am more interested in what you might call the purpose problem. Assume we maintain control. What if we solved big problems like hunger and disease, and the world kept getting more peaceful: What purpose would humans have then? What challenges would we be inspired to solve?

In this version of the future, our biggest worry is not an attack by rebellious robots, but a lack of purpose.

What if a happy, healthy life was guaranteed for every child on Earth? How would that change the role parents play?

…Like every parent, I want my children to lead happy, healthy, fulfilling lives. But what if such a life was guaranteed for every child on Earth? How would that change the role parents play?

Harari does the best job I have seen of explaining the purpose problem. And he deserves credit for venturing an answer to it. He suggests that finding a new purpose requires us to develop new religion—using the word in a much broader sense than most people do, something like “organizing principles that direct our lives.”

Unfortunately, I wasn’t satisfied by his answer to the purpose question. (To be fair, I haven’t been satisfied by the answers I have seen from other smart thinkers like Ray Kurzweil and Nick Bostrom, or by my own answers either.)…”

***

Common Purpose We Found: Oppress and, or Exterminate Them, Subhumans!

I was somewhat chuckling: Harari sees a future full of plutocracy and a situation strangely reminiscent of Israeli ruling over dozens of millions of enslaved Arabs. Gates sees a future where the poor’s pain will be alleviated, if not elevated, by the gifts of the plutocrats (if we “assume we maintain control”, an interesting Freudian slip…). And where purpose is found even though so many people have stopped suffering! (No more role for parents if everybody is happy and fulfilled; apparently!)   

***

Our Purpose: Survival, now clearly more challenging than ever:

Survive plutocracy, survive climate annihilation and general roasting of the biosphere, survive nuked tipped ICBMs from young cannibalistic maniacs, etc.

Looking at history of all civilizations, one can see that the number one danger is inequality, which affects both  mental and economic performance of a civilization. Inequality grows exponentially, and affects all dimensions of humanity. Inequality does not make the common people destitute, hungry and sick, it makes them stupid and immoral.

Exponential growth of inequality is the plutocratic effect, where an oligarchy, the government of a few, ends up ruling not just from wealth, but also from satanic means (thus the word “Pluto”; hence the notion of Pluto-power: Pluto-kratos). Time and time again, only a few brains end up doing all the thinking and ordering around, resulting not just in misery, but annihilation… Because a civilization where only a few think ends up completely stupid, and lacking purpose.

The “purpose” of the human species was always survival: survival of selves, survival of others we hold dear, survival of what we are attached to. There is no reason for this to change. Actually, with a quick march to ten billion humans, plenty of states making nuke in their basement thanks to laser enrichment, rising seas, runaway greenhouse (soon!), dying plankton, encroaching deserts, etc. survival will pretty much suddenly come back on the front burner.

The ilk of Steven Pinker, supported by ephemeral statistics, claim we have reached a new age of peace. However two things: we have a world oligarchy in place from control by the Permanent Members of the Security Council. That works as long as those don’t fight each other.

2)Moreover, such ages of self-satisfaction are always those of silly minds who go explore the seabed on foot, while the tsunami is gathering strength over their horizon. The more violent the catastrophe, the greater the calm before it strikes, precisely because those who could have done something to prepare and avoid it, were bathing in self-satisfaction.

***

“Final Phase of Showdown”:

Donald Trump, made a discourse in Poland which mentioned the occupation of Poland by the Nazis and the Soviets, which brought the massacre of six millions at least, 20% of the Polish population, Trump mentioned the collaboration between Nazis and Soviets to massacre Poles: he mentioned the full stop of the Red Army in the suburbs of Warsaw, waiting for moths that the Nazis had finished massacring the Polish population of the capital. (Actually the collaboration between Nazis and Soviets was decades old,m and culminated in the Treaty of 1939, made public to try to prevent France, followed by Britain, to declare war to Hitler…)

“As the Polish experience reminds us, the defense of the west ultimately rests not only on means but also on the will of its people to prevail,” Trump said. “The fundamental question of our time is whether the West has the will to survive,” he said. “Do we have the confidence in our values to defend them at any cost? Do we have enough respect for our citizens to protect our borders? Do we have the desire and the courage to preserve our civilization in the face of those who would subvert and destroy it?

The US president, in his sharpest criticism of Moscow since taking office, urged Russia to “cease its destabilizing activities in Ukraine and elsewhere and its support for hostile regimes, including Syria and Iran,” and asserting that it must “instead join the community of responsible nations in our fight against common enemies and in defense of civilization itself.

Defending civilization? An answer was provided by the US Islamist Linda Sarsour, a famous US pseudo-feminist who called a Jihad against Trump in the name of “our beloved Muhammad“. Another was provided by the cannibal leading North Korea, as he successfully fired North Korea’s first ICBM (InterContinental Ballistic Missile).  I call him a cannibal, as Kim provides dogs with his enemies, and benefactors. As food.  Alive.

Official accounts had young cannibal Kim “feasting his eyes” on the ICBM. No doubt the perspective of millions burned wet his appetite“With a broad smile on his face,” he urged scientists to send more “big and small ‘gift packages’” to the Americans, in time for Independence Day, according to North Korea state press. Kim was quoted as saying that the “protracted showdown with the U.S. imperialists has reached its final phase.

Senior U.S. and South Korean military officials warned that North Korea’s actions threatened peace. “Self-restraint, which is a choice, is all that separates armistice and war,” Gen. Vincent K. Brooks, commander of U.S. forces in South Korea, and Gen. Lee Sun-jin, chairman of the South’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in a statement.

On a slightly less grim note, let’s observe that Harari teaches in Jerusalem, at the Hebrew University. In this particular context, the claim that humanity is threatened with bliss, immortality, and divinity will make at least half of the population sneer in dismay, not to say hatred. Some may well argue this is all a red herring, while the West Bank get progressively colonized, and the problem of Israeli Arabs, not solved…

In any case, the problems we have to solve quickly have never been so great, in the history of advanced life. Advanced life is going through one of its three worst mass extinctions. Arguably, advanced life is facing the worst mass extinction, ever: projections on CO2 rise and temperature rises are, potentially the largest, ever, since there are vertebrates and they wiggle.

Exciting and increasingly hot times…

Patrice Ayme’.