Posts Tagged ‘Foundations’

The ORIGINS OF MATHEMATICS: PHYSICS OF AXONAL NETWORKS

December 30, 2020

There are two languages: common language, which is messy, and mathematics, which is much more precise, and contains basic physics. Indeed, all common languages are more or less isomorphic (same shape and preoccupations).

Mathematics is the part of common language which, given precise axioms, is the simplest and irreducibly deduced from those simplest notions (in physics, thus nature). “Physics” is a compendium of how nature looks, for sure, or how it works, de facto. How nature looks, as deduced from experiments, has varied in the last 100 million years… and that description is getting increasingly precise, as demonstrated by our ever greater power in making nature do as we wish.

But how nature works inside brains has become ever more powerful and precise ever since there are brains, and they have grown. Neurology is an emergent part of nature. Thus it is factual, being natural, and we also call its basic architecture mathematics, when we describe it. For example, basic category theory looks like the simplest abstraction of basic neurology restricted to the simplest axons…

Thus elucidated, counting becomes a matter of neural networks. 1 + 1 = 2 can be directly envisioned as a semantic description of a (very useful) neural network which has appeared in advanced species. That makes “2” a description of some neuronal architecture. There is no free will there. “2” is just the label for a particular type of neural network found in nature.

As a result of being the product of emerging neuronal networks, there is no more free will in “2” than in the Iron nucleus (Fe 56). And so on it goes: “pi” is the length of the circumference of a circle of radius 1. No free will there, either.

Nor is there for multiplication of real numbers. Even better: one gets in complex numbers by trying to build a multiplication in the plane which generalizes the multiplication of real numbers. There is a way to do this (multiplying distances to the origin, adding angles from the real axis): it enables us to get square roots of negative numbers… some numbers which multiplied by themselves, have a negative square. Not much freedom there. But then something spectacular happens: this gives the best description of light (including momentum, energy and polarization)… And as such becomes the basic language of Quantum Physics.

How could that all be?

Does that mean that our brain and how we build networks there, is not free from Quantum Physics? Indeed. Let’s inverse the question: how could the brain be free of Quantum Physics, considering, well, that Physics, Nature in Greek, is Quantum? Would that not be considering that brains are not natural?

If somehow there is no free will in the nature of the neural networks (and thus mathematics) we build, where could free will be? Well, in which kind of networks we decide to build, then? The networks themselves, at their simplest, are mathematics, and thus mathematics is digital… So is language. Being digital, and finite (in its mode of construction) make languages and mathematics, limited and pre-ordained. But Quantum Physics itself is based on a continuum, and that brings the freedom… of the butterfly effect. Free will is a subtle thing.

The famous mathematician Richard Dedekind said numbers were the work of God, and the rest of mathematics the work of man. It is probably wiser to acknowledge that we, or at least our mathematics, are the work of physics… self-describing…

Patrice Ayme

CONSCIOUSNESS, ATOM OF THOUGHT, Atom of Computing: All Found In Electrons?

May 7, 2018

Consciousness: we know we have it, we know many other animals have it, but we don’t know what it is.

Before we can answer this, a question naturally arises: so what is it, to know what it is? What is it, to be? “To be” is something our consciousness knows, when it perceives it. But we also need to know when something “is” to know when, how and if our consciousness is.

In order to simplify our thinking on this arduous subject, existence entangled with consciousness, consider our most fundamental, hence simplest, theory. Consider Quantum Physics. Surely “existence” is defined there, as Quantum Physics deals with what is most fundamental. Take the simplest examples: photon, electron. What is an electron? In Quantum Physics, an electron is what one electron does. Isn’t that enlightening?

Shouldn’t consciousness be, what consciousness does?

Initially, electrons were just negatively charged particles. At least, so it was until Bohr. Then the description of the electron became much more complex. It turned out that electrons did occupy only some energy levels. Then came De Broglie, who said electrons did as waves he attached to them did. And it was found, indeed, that electrons did so. PAM Dirac then proposed the simplest “relativistic” equation for the electron (a more complicated, second degree PDE had been proposed before and couldn’t be made to predict what was observed). That requested something called “spinor space”…. Then in turn predicted electronic spin and the anti-electron, and both were observed.

(Important aside: the French mathematician Cartan had invented spinors earlier in pure geometry. Yes, invented: he built-in his brain the relevant neurological connections, that is, the relevant geometry.)

Thus what we now call the electron has become higher dimensional in logical space (logical space is the space spanned by independent axioms; I just made it up; that means there is a connection between logic and geometry… thus, in particular, arithmetic and geometry…).

By adding axioms to its description, the concept of electron has become richer… The electron is a richer concept in our consciousness.

Confronted to 2 slits, the electron acts as if it were choosing where to go, after them. Is that, not just a computation, but a primitive form of consciousness? What consciousness is made of? Hard to say for sure, at this point, but certainly a guess worth exploring: any theory of consciousness may have to take this, that the electron acts as if it were conscious, into account.

We evolved as living beings, and the more complex we became, the more conscious. Jean-Baptiste Lamarck’s law of increasing complexity applies, and is exemplified, by the evolution of consciousness.. Consciousness is probably a law of physics, not an accident of history.

Some say:’oh, well, consciousness may not be that important’. Well, first at least three different phyla evolved it, independently, on Earth, vertebrates being only one of them. (As all trout fishers know, trouts act as if they were conscious, that’s why the experienced ones are so hard to catch, when the water is clear…)

But there is a much deeper objection to considering consciousness unimportant: what is the connection of consciousness to thinking? Could the atom of consciousness be the atom of thinking…. And precisely defined as Quantum Computation?

Indeed, consider programming as presently done with electronic computers: one thing after the other, just so very fast, yet, it is fundamentally desperately dumb. Present day computing, pre-Quantum Computing, can result in desperately slow computations. Whereas the electron can compute instantaneously (says a hopefully naive Quantum theory) that problems too complicated for our (pre-Quantum!) computers to handle, and find out, where the low energy solution is. That’s the superiority of Quantum Computing: tremendous, instantaneous, stupendous computation, right.

So, what looks like a type of consciousness, found in the translating electron, is not just an incredibly efficient way of computing, it is at the core of the efficiency of the world. Could it be the most primitive form, the atom of thinking?

Identifying fundamental quantum and fundamental thinking is an idea whose time has come… Philosophically speaking, in the most practical manner, it means that discursive logic will never cover the last mile…

Patrice Ayme

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Very Tangential Observations:

1. Albert Einstein ascribed properties to the photon, and the electron, which I claim, have not been observed (thus leading physics astray, straight into the Multiverse). However the ulterior formalism sort of implemented Einstein’s design (which is older than Einstein), attributing (sort of, or maybe not) a strict position to elementary particles… and was found to give excellent  results (namely QED, QCD, the “Standard Model”…) But Ptolemy too, gave good results. Thus, now, elementary particles are endowed with properties which, if I am right, are fake… It has often happened in science that a fake, or grossly incomplete theory will masquerade as true for a very long time: math is full of them (Non Euclidean geometry, etc.).
2.  The example of Non-Euclidean geometry is revealing: it was abandoned for brain-dead Euclidean geometry… Why did those Hellenistic regime Greeks opt for that silly form of mathematics? Because their superiors, various kings and tyrants, prefered silly. Because geometry in the plane was easier, a case of looking for the keys only below the lampost, because it’s simpler, and one is drunk. Let’s not repeat the mistake of having only simple thoughts, in the case of pondering consciousness, just because our superiors prefer simple thoughts, and are drunk on their power… Soon to be extinguished in great balls of nuclear fire…

CATEGORIZING the MIND

October 27, 2014

What is the mind made of? We have progressed enormously as far as the brain objects are concerned: neurons, axons, dendrites, glial cells, neurohormones, various organs and substructures in the brain, etc.

But is there a broad mathematical framework to envision how this is all organized? There is! Category Theory! It turns out it’s a good first order approximation of mind organization. At least, so I claim.

Category Theory is about diagrams. Category Theory has been increasingly replacing advantageously Set Theory. It’s not only because Category Theory does not have to ponder the nature of objects, elements, sets.

Category Theory was long derided as “abstract nonsense” and “diagram chasing”. But it gives very deep, powerful theorems.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category_(mathematics)

I claim the powerful theorems of Category Theory should translate directly into… neurology.

Amusingly, although I accused Aristotle to have demolished democracy and fostered plutocracy through his beloved pets, the mass murdering criminal plutocratic psychopaths, Alexander and Antipater, I recognize humbly that it’s the same Aristotle who invented categories (thus making him a great thinker, and justifying an Aristotle cult among those who need to have cults to feel good about themselves)…

Aristotle’s meta-idea about categories was just to talk about the most fundamental notions:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Categories_(Aristotle)

The present essay was suggested, and is an extension of what the honorable Bill Skaggs seems to have wanted to say, in Scientia Salon, in his “Identity A Neurobiological Perspective”. (As far as I can comprehend.)

However, forget Theseus’ ship and Hollywood’s Star Trek “Transporter”. As I said in “Quantum Identity Is Strong”, Quantum Identity is not erasable, and makes those time honored examples impossibly disconnected with reality. The notion of identity has thus to be found elsewhere (as we intuitively know that there is such a notion).

According to modern Quantum Field Theory, we are made, at the most fundamental level, of fluctuating fields. They come and go, out of nowhere. So, that way, we are continually been deconstructed and rebuilt. The question naturally arises: what is preserved of me, as a set of Quantum Fields? Well, the most fundamental mathematical structure is preserved.

The same seems to hold, to a great extent, in neurobiology, as neuro circuitry, to some extent, seems to come, go, and come back.

Thus we are all like old wooden Greek ships, perpetually falling apart, and rebuilt.

To some extent, this is what happens to species, through reproduction: cells split, and reproduce themselves, thanks to DNA.

A species has identity. Yet that identity is made of DISCONTINUOUS elements: the individuals who incarnate the species, who are born, and then die. And others appear, just the same, sort of. How is that possible?

A species’ identity is its structure. Just as a neurology, or an elementary particle identity is its structure. Not just a geometric structure, not just a topological structure, but its structure, as the most fundamental notion, as a category.

So what is preserved? Shape. And how to morph said shapes… Naturally (there is a notion of natural transformation, in Category Theory).

Historically, analyzing shape was systematized by the Greeks: Euclidean geometry, cones, etc. Then, at the end of the Nineteenth Century, it was found that geometry studied shapes mostly by studying distance, and yet, even if distance was denied consideration, there was a more fundamental notion of shape, topology. That was the structure of shapes as defined by neighborhoods.

Two generations later, Category Theory arrived. Category Theory is about morphisms, and the structures which can be built with them. Please listen to the semantics: structures, morphing… This is all about shapes reduced to their most basic, simplest symbolic expression. It’s no wonder that it would come in handy to visualize neurological structures.

A morphism is a pair of “objects” (CT leaves unspecified what the “objects” are). To model that neurologically, we can just identify ‘objects’ to neurons (or other neurological structures), and morphisms to axons (although dendrites, and more, could be included, in a second stage, when the categoretical modelling become more precise).

The better model is category theory. When are two diagrams equivalent? When are they IDENTICAL? Cantor defined as of the same cardinal two sets in a bijection (a bijection is a 1 to 1, onto map).

Category Theory defines as identical the same diagram (a drawing reduced to its simplest essence). Say: A>B>C>D>A is the same as E>F>G>H>E.

Thus, when are two diagrams identical in category theory? When they are modelled by the same neuronal network. (Or, more exactly, axonal network: make each arrow “>” above, into an axon.) And reciprocally!

Discussing the mind will involve discussing the most fundamental structures constituting it. What better place to start, than the most basic of maths? Especially if it looks readily convertible in neural networks.

Category Theory is the most fundamental theoretical structure we know of. It is the essence of identity, and identification. In conclusion, two objects are identical, neurologically, and in fundamental physics, if they are so, in category theory.

Time to learn something categorically new!

Patrice Ayme’

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Note: No True Isolated Rocks: In other news, and to address a point of Bill Skaggs, whether a rock can be truly isolated is an open problem, experimentally speaking.

According to the theory of gravitation of Einstein and company, a rock cannot be isolated. Why? Because the rock is immersed in spacetime. Spacetime is animated by gravitational waves: this is what the Einstein Field Equation implies. Now, according to an unproven, but hoped-for principle of fundamental physics, to each force field is associated a particle. In the case of gravity, that hoped-for particle is called the graviton. “Particle” means a “particular” effect. Thus, an isolated rock, according to established theory, and hoped-for theory, ought to be adorned occasionally with a new particle, a new graviton, thus ought not to be isolated.

In my own theory, Objective Quantum Physics, on top of the preceding standard effect, resolving Quantum Entanglements, ought to create even more particles in “isolated” rocks.

Gates Of Hell

November 18, 2013

Here they were, our Lords, on the magazine“60 Minutes” of CBS News, a magazine once made famous for courageously revealing systemic, state instituted US malfeasance during the Vietnam War. Here were our lords of wealth and taste. Our Lords. On the left Warren Buffet, who made a fortune from for-profit health “care”, and on the right Bill Gates, who made a fortune from technology he didn’t so much invent as exploited.
In the middle, domineering psychologically and physically, in a striking mix of self appreciating virgin Mary, and ramrod straight Marie Antoinette, Melinda Gates, Bill’s spouse.
The subject? The tremendous good plutocrats make, as governments flounder, and the billionaires come to save us, by displacing and replacing government (say by replacing public schools by charter schools, with the benediction of Obama). In other words, nowadays, plutocrats don’t even bother to hide they are the government.

Gates Tax Free Palace, Seattle Behind

The propaganda piece told us how the billionaires were a “silver lining” in lieu of government for education, research, health, etc. Hey, the Gates, we were told, nearly eradicated polio. Things sure have changed at “60 Minutes” since the Vietnam War. Then the establishment was the enemy, and plutocrats hid behind it. Now plutocrats, saya “60 Minutes”, are our saviors, providers of righteous morality, not just all the data.

The 60 Minutes interviewer was Charlie Rose (himself family connected to plutocracy). Here is his introduction:
Today, the wealthiest 400 Americans are worth over \$2 trillion… they own as much wealth as the bottom half of American households combined.

While resentment towards the super rich grows, there may be a silver lining taking shape. It turns out a lot of those rich people are giving staggering sums of money away, in what is being called a golden age of philanthropy.

And this surge in generosity is not by accident…. it was started by an influential trio: Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett… Learn more about their new club for billionaires. Membership comes with just two requirements: be worth at least a billion dollars and be willing to give half of that away.”
The report did not define what “giving” means. As we will see, it’s not “giving” at all. It’s more like the difference between leasing and owning. Or more like the difference between having capital, and having a rent. Rich people, in the Nineteenth Century, were called “rentiers”. Because they had a rent. This is what Buffet advocates. A rent. Tax free. Instead how going to the Buffet once, go there everyday. For free. Forever.

Nor did the report insist that money is all about controlling power. If one has power control, one does need money. It alluded to that problem, just to refute it. How? Hell, the Gates “nearly eradicated” polio. (They did not eradicate Monsanto, though…)
“60Minutes”:”Buffett and the Gates invite pledgers once a year to exclusive resorts like Kiawah Island in South Carolina. Here billionaires attend sessions on how to give money away more effectively. Our cameras were not allowed in.”
[Nothing like “exclusivity”; camera pans out on incredibly luxurious accomodations, gigantic resort, gold plated everything, cashmere carpets, crystal chandeliers, etc…]
“60 Minutes”: “This day’s agenda: it included lessons on how tools like technology can be used to transform failing schools and, with the government cutting funding on medical research, how can philanthropists step in and help spur new medical breakthroughs. But we wondered, what else goes on behind closed doors?
Randall Lane [Forbes Magazine editor; interviewed by “60 Minutes”, as part of the segment]:
The public has a right to know who owns the world. Government is showing, you know, over the past couple decades that it can no longer solve the great problems of the day. Now these philanthropists who have incredible wealth, the problem-solving brainpower, and also the name and the influence to be able to open doors are uniquely qualified right now to solve the huge problems.
60 Minutes: But that does raise the question: do these billionaires have too much power?
Charlie Rose: There’s some people who say big philanthropy is not such a good idea, meaning that somehow you have enormous power and you’re not elected and, and that that may not be such a good idea to have people with enormous wealth to have so much influence.

Warren Buffett: Well, would they prefer dynastic wealth? Pass it on. Or would they prefer, you know, obscenely high living?

Bill Gates: …We do think we’re all gonna be smarter and do it better learning from each other. But there is no pooling of money. We celebrate the diversity of philanthropy.
Charlie Rose: “OK, so there’s no instance in which somebody could say, “Look, I mean, we got too many people of huge wealth who are having too much influence.”

Jean Case [plastic surgery billionairess]: “Well, Charlie. Think about Bill and polio, for instance. Bill and Melinda’s work in polio. I mean, they’re coming close to eradicating polio on the face of the Earth. I think when we have a couple of examples like that, people will see, that’s not power being used for personal purposes. That’s really leveraging everything you have to change the world to make it better.”

What is all this giving all about? Creating “Foundations” upon which the relatives of the hyper wealthy can get a rent, tax free, forever. It all started with Rockefeller, a century ago, and was initially blocked by all, ferociously. But times have changed. A lot.
For plutocrats, wrong is right. So when they are wrong, they feel right. By definition of what “Pluto” means.
The mythical Jesus Christ discovered this 2,000 years ago, and was very clear on the subject:“A rich man will find it more difficult to go to heavens than a camel through the eye of a needle”. It is curious that Christians are not making more noise about this.
Krugman is coming to the same conclusion as Jesus. Me too.
The true aim of economics ought to be work and energy (same thing). Instead it has evolved into theories about money, something private bankers create on behalf of the government, and give to their friends and clients.
A whole generation of economists has become rich by serving the rich with theories that help the rich. Why would they stop? They would endanger their income, power and reputation by doing so.
Now we are being told that money ought to govern, not just economics, but society itself. Directly.
The Foundation Law allows plutocrats to exert power, basically tax free, forever (there is 2% tax on “investment income”). Foundations just have to spend 5% of their capital a year, but the beauty of it, is that they can spend it on themselves. And they do.
Example: Gates’s palatial headquarters in Seattle.
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Patrice Ayme

Foundation Delusion

May 1, 2011

Kneel to hyper wealth, the republic is history.

TOO MANY FOUNDATIONS ARE JUST PLUTOCRATIC EXPLOITATION DEVICES.

Main ideas: All too many foundations further plutocracy. Their nefarious influence spreads far and wide. From the University of Chicago (fief of reducing all to greed, founded by a foundation), to the four decades of American sponsored war in Afghanistan (a devious plot of the 1970s to institute oil procurement in Central Asia). The many foundations of plutocratic type drag society down the road to hell in all sorts of ways, some overt, some covert, and the worst are emotional.

Paying careful attention to emotional distorsion brings a new twist to the school building foundation tied to “Three Cups of Tea”. It should have been “Three Cups of Oil” (surprise, surprise!). I view that foundation’s main mission to be part of a giant cover-up about what has been truly instituted in Central Asia, in the name of American consumer. Indeed, real U.S. policy was the exact opposite.

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Abstract: In my book, plutocracy is the rule of Pluto, not just wealth. Wealth is only one of the characteristics of that God. Invisibility is another. Being underground, under cover still another.

And then, of course there is Hades sie, the Dark Side of the Mind. Plutocrats have many awful tricks. Foundations are one of these tricks. Foundations allow their corporate officers to rule the world ever more, while living like kings and queens ever more, including to enjoy the warm glow of the adorating masses cued by the Main Stream Media (see the Melinda & Barack school show).

But the underground has other tricks. The magazine of the plutocrat Forbes will not talk about his colleague Qaddafi’s 150 billion dollar fortune: that’s friendly, and that is wise (otherwise people would understand what plutocracy really is!).

Qaddafi, of the most powerful sort of plutocrats, the mass murdering plutocrat, hides behind the innocent, preferably masses of children. That helped him to reign 42 years. He learned his lesson well. Once Qaddafi, during one of his invasions of Chad, decades ago, was among his military, like the average dictator, without any women and children to hide behind. He was at a desert air strip. French aircraft came low and fast. Their bombs, slowed down by drag chutes, nearly killed him. Ever since the dictator has been careful  to surround himself with curtains of innocents.

As it is, dozens of American plutocrats have taken a well publicized oath to shelter all their money in foundations, calling that philanthropic. See: they should not be taxed, they are already so good, besides supporting the world on their mighty shoulders (and if they smirk,  for your own good too, because you have not worked enough, you have not served hard enough to be able to do that, so they are doing it for you: watch their servants serve in Washington, and be rewarded with fortunes, thereafter).

The blossoming of American foundations is a devious plot to foster, advertize, and protect American plutocracy. Foundations let the hyper wealthy avoid taxes, while allowing them to gather ever more power, with the complicity and collaboration of  the political leadership.

(For another touching aspect of the foundation story, see Obama saving American schools thanks to a few millions from Melinda Gates, apparently a sort of unelected unofficial official who married well. Instead, why does not Obama propose to tax the Gates 50 billion dollars, to get some real money, for American schools? Is somebody looking for a future source of income, thus preserving it carefully for future generations of his own brood? Just asking…)

The scandal of the foundation delusion extends well beyond “Three Cups of Tea” and its sordid entanglement of military policy and propaganda in Afghanistan. The reign of foundations aims at replacing the justice of the republic by the philanthropy of feudalism, part of a cynical, concerted attempt to make the public thing irrelevant, and foster the cult of Pluto and its agents.

And Qaddafi, top plutocrat, and top foundation artist in all this? Is he out for good? Would not that be tragic for plutocracy? For the new foundation of the world on plutocracy? Sure. And that is why, as I write this, American envoys are secretly negotiating with Qaddafi in Mauretania. Not something European philosophers approve of, to put it mildly. But still a new twist in trickery of those who believe that the world ought to be in their pocket.

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USA: A WEALTH OF POVERTY, FRANCE: A POVERTY OF WEALTH?

One constant element of plutocratic propaganda in the USA is the sentence:”Americans are the most generous people in the world“. If one watches Fox News for a few hours, one will encounter that leitmotiv a few times. By that they probably mean that their rich sponsors have given them a lot.

Indeed, this is rather curious: so much generosity, so much poverty! The overall poverty rate climbed in 2009 to 14.3 percent, or 43.6 million people, the Census Bureau said its annual report on the economic well-being of U.S. households in September 2010 (the poverty line is \$21,500 for four people). The share of Americans without any health coverage rose to 16.7 percent — or 50.7 million people.

Let’s compare with the usual suspect, the French public thing, the French res publica. The poverty line in France is set higher than in the USA at half of median income (thus would be 25K for 4). The poor seem to be around 6% of the French population… with free health care, free education, subsidized transportation, etc., the French are not poor in the American sense of increasing destitution and decreasing lifespan. The occurrence of poverty decreased in France over 30 years down from 15% (namely the present American levels).

France improved, the USA blatantly regressed, and this durable collapse is worse than the Great Depression of the 1930s (on long time series).

Why such a contrast between US and French poverty? The USA ought to be much wealthier than France. Like Saudi Arabia, the USA has massive reserves of oil and gas, and France has none. Like Germany, the USA has lots of coal, and France has none. A hint to solve that riddle: in France the hyper wealthy get taxed the most, and that is more than 50%. In the USA, the hyper wealthy get taxed the less, and that is an average of 17%. (France has Arnault, a self made man, nearly as rich as Buffet, and without insider trading! So French billionaires are not suffering too much…)

And that 17% tax for the hyper wealthy does not even take into account the tax dodge of the FOUNDATION ILLUSION.

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FOUNDATIONS AS ONE MORE WEAPON OF THE PLUTOCRATS:

As a private company which set up “Private Family Foundations” puts it:

“In recent years, several private foundations have gained prominence in the media, and raised public awareness of their causes. Foundations, including the Bill and Melinda Gates, are often created with one philanthropic goal in mind. However, as the grantors often realize, establishing your own foundation can often make smart money sense, as well.

Plus, your last name does not have to be Rockefeller or Getty to start your own.

The Role of the Foundation:

A Private Family Foundation (PFF) is a separate entity, privately funded by you. It is created with the specific purpose of contributing to various charitable causes.

As a distinct, legal entity, The Private Family Foundation:

1. Contributes to a charitable cause and takes a tax deduction, while relinquishing personal control over your gift.

2. Minimizes your estate tax liability.

3. Avoids capital gains tax on the sale of appreciated property contributed to the charity of your choice.

4. Provides continuing employment and activity for your family members.

5. Identifies and preserves your family name for years to come.

Any Private Family Foundation must be created with a charitable “intent.” The Foundation is managed by a trustee or executive director that oversees the Foundation’s investments and distributes the Foundation’s assets.

You can even appoint yourself as the trustee of your own Foundation. This way, you maintain control over the assets contained in the Foundation.”

The Foundation Law in the USA was passed the same day as the Income Tax Law. Need I say more? The point (3) above means that if an individual becomes immensely wealthy through, say, the growth of shares in a company, he can transfer the gigantic profits without having to pay tax. Nor will his heirs have to pay tax. No wonder so many American foundations are rabidly “conservative” (a euphemism for plutocratic propaganda).

Did you ever wonder why so many hyper wealthy Americans set-up “charities” overseas in the most scenic places, and are thus forced to tough it out in the world’s most expensive hotels? (Hint: see which heavenly places the “Melinda and Bill Gates” enjoy when they go rescue Kenyans from mosquitoes!)

Thus we can see that the basic Foundation Law is a sham, a tax shelter for the hyper wealthy one is supposed to adore as if it were the Golden Calf. That is another advantage of the growth of foundations. It incites the commons to admire the hyper wealthy, and view in them heroes whose immense generosity saves the world.

As foundations are protected from taxation, those devices of the hyper wealth, or the instruments they created, themselves typically tax-free, never stop growing. They are to the American jungle what ever-growing crocodiles are to the Australian swamps. Thus their strident pro-plutocratic propaganda is always louder. (See the Heritage Foundation, which is always careful to put the usual suspect, the French republic, at the bottom of all the classification it makes, and then Heritage is widely quoted in turn by the Main Stream Media of the USA, itself plutocratically owned.)

Then “The Economist” wonders in its April 28, 2011 issue: “Angst in the United States. What’s wrong with America’s economy? Its politicians are failing to tackle the country’s real problems. Believe it or not, they could learn from Europe.”

Really? “The Economist” used to sing the praises of the bloody dictator Pinochet (hey, another plutocrat!) and used to hate European welfare. For that neoconservative magazine to say this, that europe has got it more right, that Europe of the welfare state, the situation has got to be dismal. And so it is. “The Economist” praises welfare models against unemployment, that is massive government programs of retraining found in several countries.

However, “The Economist” does not realize the depth of the sociological problems of the USA. The cult of the foundations, that is, the cult of the Golden calf, is one of them. And that cult keeps on eluding “The Economist”. (Although the magazine has bemoaned the importance of wealth in the access to higher education in the USA.)

The dominance of the society of the USA by unlected, uncontrolled wealth has reduced democracy to shambles and fumes. That is why the white, educated USA is not reproducing anymore (as digging in the Census’s statistics show), making the problem even worse. Which schools would the educated white middle class send their children to? To do what thereafter? To serve the hyper wealthy by becoming valet park attendants?
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NOT SO FUNNY PHONIES:

Recently the revered Buffet, the USA’s richest financier, has been exposed in a way even American naifs  can comprehend: his closest collaborator, with whom he worked for decades, engaged in a form of massive insider trading (buying for his own account stock he would then get Buffet’s fortune to purchase).

I view Buffet as the world’s greatest insider trader, the ultimate splurger at the financial buffet. But, since its collaborator in this matter was the Bushama administration, and the untouchable puppet master Goldman Sachs, I shall thread lightly for now. The spider web of foundations extends throughout the USA, with poisonous spiders all over. As I said, Buffet connects to Gates. Both connect directly to Obama.

Another who became famous, and even central in the propaganda machine of the plutocracy of the USA, was the author of “Three Cups of Tea”, a required reading at the Pentagon, the entire world was loudly told. That Greg Mortenson, a medic, a sort of mountaineer, discovered and proclaimed that schools were better than bombs. Wow: all America was fascinated, by such Christian secular wisdom, that it broke into applause, and a Greg Mortenson cult grew: one American medic cures the world, teaches the little Muslim girls. How strong is America! And how good! See American money save the world, thanks to American generosity!

It turns out that the whole thing, top to bottom, may be phony (surprise, surprise!) Indeed why not to set-up good schools in the USA first? If education is that important? And why not to impose good schools in Central and South Asia through local government programs? Well, it sounds fishy, does not it? As we will see, the answer is convoluted, but central to the quagmire.

Jon Krakauer was impressed initially, and gave Greg Mortenson \$75,000, but then, as he relates in “Three Cups of Deceit“:

Mortenson [used] his phony memoir to solicit tens of millions of dollars in donations from unsuspecting readers, myself among them. Moreover, Mortenson’s charity, the Central Asia Institute, has issued fraudulent financial statements, and he has misused millions of dollars donated by schoolchildren and other trusting devotees. “Greg,” says a former treasurer of the organization’s board of directors, “regards CAI as his personal ATM.”

***

IS CAI SPELLED CIA?

The ramifications are much more sinister than even the astute Jon Krakauer has it. The strategy of the government of the USA is a conspiracy, or it’s not. Pseudo charities such as Mortenson’s are part of an obvious trick to mislead Americans, and others, about the real policies of the government of the USA in Central Asia. (Russia, and now China are also very good at disguising agents as aid workers… something the French don’t need to do, as they have their military in many African countries, when they do not collaborate tightly, as they do with Algeria, Morocco, or say, the Ivory Coast, now that French rockets have cleared said coast…)

The real use of Mortenson’s organization, as far as the thinkers in Washington are concerned, is as a propaganda operation, and a lot of the targets, is the public. The gullible public is in the USA, and South Asia. CAI hides the reality, which is, in its historical whole, the exact opposite of what CAI claims to want to do. Thus Nixon insisted:”I am not a crook!”. American policy is Nixon, writ large (and this is literally true: it’s Nixon and the still influential Kissinger who launched the plutocratic collaboration with the Chinese dictatorship… Nixon also launched HMOs… officially, Carter launched the war in Afghanistan in 1979, but some digging would no doubt excavate Nixon again).

***

HOW CENTRAL ASIAN OIL WAS WON FOR THE WEST:

By having the Pentagon read “Three Cups of Tea” ostensibly, American progressives and American conservatives were led to beleive that the American defense apparatus went according to Mortenson’s credo: “schools, not bombs“.

The progressives felt good, the conservatives, even more so: American charity at its best. Not only are these people trying to kill us, but we keep on building schools for them. American do-gooders got persuaded of the opposite of reality. A first aspect of reality is that there are more American private contractors in Afghanistan than soldiers, and they are not building schools, but making war. Indeed,  the historical reality of American governmental policy is the exact opposite of the Americans-bring-schools-not-bombs myth the CIA, and the CAI, are trying to push.

Historically the Afghan war started when Pakistani intelligence, certainly incited by its boss, American intelligence, organized some primitives and thugs to prevent girls to go to school in Afghanistan. It all started with a  policy exactly opposite to that which is ostnsibly Greg Mortenson’s misson, and that is why Greg Mortenson is such an important cover-up, with sponsors in the highest places. Nothing better for a cover than the exact opposite of what is below.

Why so mean? Why did American intelligence promote an anti-girl policy? Because killing those who taught girls and attacking schools destabilized Afghanistan into civil war, into religious war, and towards a primitive, proto-Islamist state. If you want to rule, start by inciting potential opponents to fight each other. Nothing like religious war.

Some will say: “Wait, there is no oil in Afghanistan, just rare earths, the stuff green cars are made of!” Yes, true. As in the countries occupied by China next door. However, there is a lot of oil and gas, just immediately north of Afghanistan. That area was under Russian lock and key, before American intelligence started its Afghan adventure.

American intelligence knew all too well that Islam was the way to destabilize Central Asia. Destabilizing Aghanistan would gibe the USA a plausible reason to organize a Jihad. A somewhat similar strategy had been used against… France, in Algeria and the Sahara.

It worked then, sort of, against the French, and it worked again, and this time, much better. Mostly secular Afghanistan became a battlefield dominated by the USA, its army, its intelligence agents, its proxies, and a 250,000 strong army of Jihadists. The richest Saudis got a green light to spread money and jihad around, all the way to the Caucasus, and beyond.

This has been going on for four decades, although deliberately ignorant Americans became aware of Afghanistan only in 2001. Not only was Afghanistan destabilized, but so was all of Central Asia, and even the Caucasus. The Jihad spread all the way to London, even New York (distracting, but giving no the excuse to send official armies all over the region!)

Now American oil companies are all over Central Asia, north of Afghanistan, and the Russians are mostly out. Who said the Afghan war was not a great success? (The pathetic Russians were reduced to trying to cut the oil pipelines in Georgia, with their tanks!)

So it is the highest heights of insolence to now have the American Army crowe that it does good because it allows American civilians such as Mortenson to build schools for girls! If Mortenson’s Central Asian Institute did not exist the American oil strategy, the American Central Asian strategy, would have had to institute it. If something exists, look carefully at whom it really profits (and the same goes for foundations!)

***

GENEROSITY FOR REAL:

Governments can be much more generous than individuals. It is a physical fact: a government is much larger, first of all. Secondly a government trying to be generous has a non-profit mission: office holders are not stakeholders. The officers of a government trying to be generous do not go in the best hotels in private jets, as the Gates do. And do not pay themselves hefty salaries to reward their own generosity, as most foundation types do.

A government can make sure that its generosity is not corrupted (there are laws against that, worldwide). And a government can be much more organized too. Besides, a government can enforce generosity, through taxation.

For all the big talk about their generosity, the American hyper wealthy are sucking the USA dry. They are like hyenas with a clamp on the throat of their victims, and they cannot talk.

The government can make sure that those who have it by far the easiest can contribute he most. After all, it’s the overall organization of society which allows them to have it by far the easiest. It is not that the sweat of their brow is a torrent, whereas sweat only pearls on the brow of others. Heroes exist, true, as Nietzsche, Ayn Rand, and zillions of others have pointed out, even before Ramses II’s tremendous non victory at Kadesh in Syria against the Hittites. Everybody agree that the Pharaoh in his electrum chariot, defended by his Greek bodyguard, saved the day.

But most of the greedy who crave power through money are not cut of that heroic cloth. They are more like rats who will do anything to get to the cheese, under the cover of darkness. (And therein a serious cancer, in the mind of our civilization, as  I point out in conclusion.)

Heroism should be encouraged, thus rewarded (although not exactly as in the USSR). But heroes do not lift the world: heroes they are, yes, but Atlases carrying the economy and sociology of the world, no.

***

MISSION CIVILISATRICE, YES, FAKE GOODNESS, NO:

Americans discover that it feels good to instruct the ignorant. Good. But nothing new. The “Mission Civilisatrice” of Nineteenth Century French colonialism was not invented yesterday, and it worked (mostly). All of Senegal was conquered, or, more exactly pacified, by 5,000 Senegalese soldiers led by ten French born officers. Thus out of many local potentates, and seven nations with different languages, one national entity, Senegal, was born. With mandatory public schooling and free health care. Not bad for a country where, in the boondocks, slavery was one of the main industries, a generation before.

Although I smirk at superstition, I recognize that some religious organizations have contributed very positively to the civilizing mission (some Christian, some Muslim). Some of the clergy means the goodness they advocate (and it has nothing to do with the superstition in the name of which it is done).

But peace was also, and mostly, conquered at the point of a (well aimed) gun. In India, the British did, at the point of that well aimed gun, what 35 centuries of Hinduism and 24 centuries of Buddhism had not done. The British took out the murderous infamy of the caste system (a system the abominable Gandhi defended with all his meekness, down to his humiliating assassination).

The British also disrespected violently Indian superstition, by outlawing the  time honored religious tradition to burn the young widows alive with the corpses of their old rich husbands. Actually the Brits pushed their meddling so far as forbidding any burning of widows whatsoever, alive or not. Talk about colonial arrogance!

Overall, except for the occasional holocaust against Neolithic people (in the USA and Australia), the civilizing mission of the West has been pretty effective to foster more advanced civilization (the intellectual trade went both ways: African music spread worldwide, for example). However, this is not what is going in Afghanistan. (It is going on in Libya, though.)

Americans have been victim of plutocratic propaganda, and really believe that their “charities”, these foundations made initially to turn around the estate tax, and other taxes, work. No. If you want charity, institute a 50% tax rate on the well-off, as in Europe, and cut down on the personality cult. Then insist on the generosity of the government.

Government generosity is a splendid success in Scandinavia. After taking great care of their own citizens (generally wealthier than Americans, with much less poverty) those countries give a considerable part of their GDP in true generosity.

In the USA, the much vaunted generosity of Buffet, Gates and company is just a mask for one the most unfair societies in the world, getting even more so every day. Obama and his demoncrats have been kinder to the rich than even his (future) billionaire of a predecessor (by lowering tax rates even more). Just look at how many Americans are in prison, or in serious trouble (parole, etc.) with the justice system: about ten millions. These rates of incarceration are, by far, the highest rates in the world.

Foundations have their place, but not how they are presently set-up in the USA (other countries have other arrangements). The Foundation law ought to be changed, so that foundations cease to be tax shelters, and influence-peddling oppression devices of the hyper wealthy. Obama should learn to avoid the wealthiest tax dodgers, instead of advertizing them as somehow worthy of presidential praise.

***

FOUNDATIONAL DEMONIZATION:

Last, but not least. I have exposed above reasons to disapprove of the grip foundations are having on American (hence World) society. Foundations are tax shelters, they exert undue influence, their replace public policy by private whim, they help buttress the spectacular claim that plutocracy that it is a philanthropy. Foundations incite people to go on their knees and beg the plutocracy as if it were the Golden Calf. The Bible warned us about Golden Calves. And rightly so.

But there is worse. Foundations select for guidance by the worst. Even if it is guidance for the best, all too often it is guidance by the worst. And no, I am not just alluding to the Qaddafi Foundation.

Selection by the worst? Why? How? Why did parts of mankind ended being led by murderers such as Qaddafi or Hitler? Was that bad luck? not at all. They led the way they did, precisely because they were the worst. Only the worst can commit mass murder to satisfy their ambition, or, even worse, can view mass murder as a worthy ambition.

There is an ominous connection between extreme ambition, the will to move mountains, and achievements akin to having mountains crumble on the many.

Evil exist in this world, as Obama himself recognized. Evil has a mission: submit the many into oblivion. That mission was evolutionary selected because of its ecological advantage. It leads to the yearning for power; submitting the many feels irresistible.

Hence the obsession some have to gather as much power as possible. (The bell curve of the frequency of unhinged domination was tilted just so by evolution that there are enough of these to insure just enough of whatever is necessary in the human character to provide with, which is also very bad. However, that shift into badness, just so, is adapted to war with sticks and stones, not thermonuclear weapons, and that is why democracies have to be pitiless, but not for the reasons and with the low standards Athens used.)

Those people obsessed by dominating others are going to compose most of the cohort which amasses great fortunes (as the 2011 book on Bill Gates by his closest collaborator, Paul Allen reveals). Should those types lead humankind? Some will mumble that Pericles, although overambitious, was a great political leader, that he inflected civilization the right way. True enough. But Pericles was just the mouthpiece of a number of top philosophers, and he mistreated Anaxagoras enough that the latter embarked on a suicidal hunger strike. Similarly, Caesar, Charlemagne, and many others were moderated by top philosophers.

Now all the plisophy which rules is from Wall Street, finance, oil tycoons, medicine greedsters, in other words, aspects of Pluto.

***

PUBLIC RULE VERSUS PRIVATE WEALTH:

In any case, although most foundations have a political role, be it only by displacing proper public institutions, the fact remains that many, if not most of the influential ones, are intrinsically associated to artists of greed rather than the duty of good.

In a democracy, a republic, the power of elected officials is kept in check, first, by the public. Not so in a society dominated by foundations by the rich, for the rich.

The public, in a true democracy or true republic, also decides which emotions should dominate society, by financing them properly. Not so in a society dominated by foundations by the rich, for the rich.

And this is one difference with europe that “The Economist” should mull over. European powers finance the emotion of care, by financing public health care, or taking care of the unemployed (with income support and retraining: see the Netherlands).

Whereas, in the last thirty years, the political system in the USA, propped by foundations and their creatures (such as the university of Chicago) has financed the financiers, thus fostering the emotion of greed, and what goes with it, the greatest fraud ever conducted (the fake collapse of the financial system in 2008, and its “rescue” by politicians, in the name of the ignorant public, mobilizing much of the power of the American economy, ever since, something the Tea Party tried to understand, before failing to do so, no doubt thanks to its plutocratic sponsors such as the Koch brothers, and something that most of the public does not understand at all, in part because it would be too painful to switch to the revolutionary mode).

Foundations put ever more power in the hands of those who have proven, by their very successful careers, that they are the most obsessed by power, greed, domination and submission. Or in the hands of those who are the most devious (see Krakauer’s book above). Thus public control slips, and so does the enticement and reign of the mind’s noblest emotions. Hence foundations bring humankind ever lower, down the road to hell, the worship of the worst.

In a republic, if one genuinely wants good to be financed, one starts by learning not to kneel to Pluto and its the Golden Calf. One needs better emotional foundation than that.

***

Patrice Ayme

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

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SoundEagle 🦅ೋღஜஇ

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in truth, only atoms and the void

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Omnes vulnerant, ultima necat

GrrrGraphics on WordPress

www.grrrgraphics.com

Skulls in the Stars

The intersection of physics, optics, history and pulp fiction

Footnotes to Plato

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

Patrice Ayme's Thoughts

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

Learning from Dogs

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

ianmillerblog

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

Defense Issues

Military and general security

RobertLovesPi.net

Polyhedra, tessellations, and more.

How to Be a Stoic

an evolving guide to practical Stoicism for the 21st century

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

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

SoundEagle 🦅ೋღஜஇ

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

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Artificial Turf At French Bilingual School Berkeley

Patterns of Meaning

Exploring the patterns of meaning that shape our world

Sean Carroll

in truth, only atoms and the void

West Hunter

Omnes vulnerant, ultima necat

GrrrGraphics on WordPress

www.grrrgraphics.com

Skulls in the Stars

The intersection of physics, optics, history and pulp fiction

Footnotes to Plato

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

Patrice Ayme's Thoughts

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

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

ianmillerblog

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

Defense Issues

Military and general security

RobertLovesPi.net

Polyhedra, tessellations, and more.

How to Be a Stoic

an evolving guide to practical Stoicism for the 21st century