Posts Tagged ‘Nobel’

Nobel, Not Noble: Fictitious Fiction Is An Addiction

October 6, 2017

Another Nobel for a guy telling stories about guys he invented in his head. Especially butlers. The context is great for the established order: Japanese boy born in Nagasaki, moves to Britain, and then, instead of fuming with anger and radiation, the good little Jap boy lauds British plutocracy and its underlings, and gets lauded in turn. Speak about a modern fable! beats the Forty-seven Ronins anyday!

In The Remains of The Days, Ishiguro vaguely alludes to the ties between the British aristocracy and the Nazis. Well, those ties were deep, and were fully deployed when Hitler was still a boy (the fascist in chief of Germany, the “Kaiser” never fail to mention them, and felt much encouraged that way). Watch the aristocrat (and Nobel Laureate) Bertrand Russell  doing his best during World War One, so that Europe would fall under the boot of Prussian Fascism (Russell went to jail for it; yes, I love and esteem Russell, but I spit for his plutocratic passion for fascism). Yes, it’s valuable this little fable of The Remains of The Days, but it’s so small in value, you know, and the universe of things we may consider, we have to consider, so much bigger! If one wants to study the connection between the Anglo-Saxons and Hitler, one should get serious and exhume serious documents, not invent little fables.

Long live the Nobel Committee whose obsequious servitude to Anglo-Saxons, attributes most literature prizes to those speaking English, even if they have to find them from Japan, especially if they have to find them from Japan… after finding them in the incoherent mumblings of a rocker who is as PC as Perfect Corruption gets. (Let me listen to some Bob, to celebrate!)

Some will say, oh, no, Kazuo Ishiguro is a British critical of British butlers. The Nobel clowns wrote: “who, in novels of great emotional force, has uncovered the abyss beneath our illusory sense of connection with the world.”

Shouldn’t we consider that people are wasting the time this civilization has to set things right, by reading soporific novels, about invented characters? Instead of learning about reality? Or instead of waking up with the robust flavor of full-blown characters from real history?

Fiction is fictitious, reality, historical.

Nobel Committee Says modern historians, hence the colossal historian Plutarch (above) himself, have no value. Value comes, say the Stockholm jesters, with their secret exploitation agenda, from making up stories. Just as the plutocracy does, a secret, deep subconscious message, for those who aren’t too smart

By never rewarding (anymore) serious thinking on real issues, the Nobel Committee says, implicitly, that modern historians, hence Plutarch himself, and philosophy in general, have no value. Value comes from affabulators making little stories with their little minds. 

[“Affabulator”, somebody making fables, a word in italian, Spanish, French, does not exist in English: court-jester is an erroneous translation; it’s high time to introduce it, since Stockholm thinks the only worthy language is English! So i did!]

The obsession with fiction is an addiction, of those who want to flee reality. And an obvious source of the lack of reflection of today’s potentially catastrophic world.

Think of it: consider what was written two millennia ago and which is still read today. Much of it is non-fiction. Nobel.Org should read more classics!

Right, there are fictional texts still read today, such as Homer, the Greek tragedies, Egyptian fables (recycled in the Bible),  Chinese and Japanese stories which are fiction and very old, and very instructive. But even the Vedas had the pretense to be “knowledge” (what Vedas mean).  

But more than half of the most important literature, from way back, is non-fiction.

The Nobel Committee neglects real serious reflection. It does not seem to understand the interest of history, or reflection thereupon. Most prestigious Greek or Roman authors still read today would not qualify as worthy of consideration, according to the clowns in Stockholm (OK, Sweden never attuned for its crimes with Hitler, and the wealth thus gathered, this is directly related, see below).

The Nobel Committee, in its anti-civilizational arrogance, and basic immorality, tells us that the genre of literature Hesiod, Herodotus, Thucydides, Xenophon, Plato, Aristotle, Zeno of Citium, Polybius, Cicero, Lucretius, Livy, Pliny (Elder or Younger), Plutarch, Lucan, Juvenal (heavy-handed satyre), Seneca, Marcus Aurelius, Julianus, Plotinus, among many others, engaged in, was not worthy. Most of classical literature is unworthy, Stockholm calmly suggests.

This attitude to spit on real intellectuals, and the very nature of their work, causes real damage to civilization, because it encourages misunderstanding of civilization itself.

For example, there a gigantic Frankish/Gallic literature, which has not been translated from  late Latin, a language nobody can read. Often written by ecclesiastics, that undiscovered treasure trove of literature documents the Dark Ages of the Imperium Francorum. That was when Western Civilization was created, in an epic mental struggle, as a distinction from, and an improvement upon, the Greco-Roman civilization. Greco-Roman civilization had a  sinister relationship to slavery, unbounded plutocracy, and, in its last, terminal phase, to a theocratic fascism so thorough, most literature, knowledge and culture got destroyed).

Nobody seems interested in translating and uncovering these roots of our civilization, our world civilization: there is no money, no glory, thus no interest in it. If a Nobel was given to historian digging deep in history, wealthy money traps such as Harvard or Stanford would no doubt pay more attention to how civilization arose (and, thus, can be sustained). Meanwhile the Nobel clowns reward all the well-fed fable lauding the establishment makers that they can find.

Stockholm does not care about any of this. It’s an apparent case of the Stockholm syndrome. Sweden sent the highest grade iron ore to Hitler, so Hitler could build weapons to terrorize the world with. Finally France and britain decided to cut that “Iron Road”. After landings in occupied Norway, the French Foreign Legion put Nazi elite divisions to flight, and the next strategic move scheduled by the Franco-British High Command, was to cut Sweden in two, and occupy the iron mines (however France fell). The idea was to starve Hitler of steel.

In the so-called “Stockholm Syndrome” a prisoner falls in love with his/her kidnappers. Did Hitler steal Sweden’s soul? Did Sweden fall in love with Hitler, and thereafter with fiction… To escape the reality that Sweden, the country, never attuned for its considerable crimes in the rise and blossoming of Nazism? It’s seems likely. So now it prefers to honor those who write about imaginary butlers. Just as Sweden was Hitler’s butler? No, way worse: without Sweden, Hitler couldn’t have re-armed. Reality always beat fiction! Be it only in sheer imagination!

How come that most prizes in literature are given to English-speaking people? For the same reason as Sweden loved Hitler: there is money in it, and it’s PC to pay one’s respect to the biggest thug on the block. At least by the Swedish establishment standards…

A general objection to my point of view could be that historical analysis, and philosophy in general, can also merge with fiction. Yes, sure. At some point, one has to do guess-work, that’s fiction. For example most theoretical physics starts as fiction. So does much of mathematics too. Philosophy, and, more generally, any creative thinking is, at least in part, serious guesswork in the beginning, always. Or then, it’s not really new!

When Nobel died, it was not clear whether the organization of the prize should go to Sweden or France. Nobel lived in France. After one of his wealthy brother died in Cannes, a French paper front page read: “Le marchand de la mort est mort” (“The merchant of death is dead.”) Alfred Nobel established the prizes to avoid precisely the sort of posthumous reputation suggested by this premature obituary. Another thing Nobel did (while two of his brothers developed the Baku oil fields) was to found the Bofors factory. When the Nazis needed guns, they went to Bofors, which gave them the 88mm Nazi gun, which became by far the number one Nazi guns, used both against aircraft and tanks.

France should certainly create an anti-Nobel prize, attributed mostly to those nationalities Nobel.Org neglects. That would be more useful than the Cannes Festival.

Nobel is not noble: this is the second time this week I had to fire a broadside at the Nobel Organization for lying and wallowing in mud. Yes, Rome too, got Perfect Corrupted by the head.  Enough of this pro-fascist monkeys! There is nothing more noble that the honor of the human spirit. Yes, time to get love-sick for the grandeur of civilization, and the task at hand, to save what maybe the only life form in the universe, intelligent enough to self-criticize.

Patrice Ayme’

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Reality Beats Fiction Always. Time to Learn This Again!

October 8, 2015

Let’s hope Angela Merkel gets the Nobel Peace Prize for her courageous stand to accept hundreds of thousands of war refugees. This is political dynamite, she handled it as well as possible, as a teacher of the highest values. A rare case of a Western “leader” displaying courage and creativity.

Meanwhile the Nobel in literature was given to reality. Svetlana Alexievich, a Belarussian journalist, born in Ukraine, a prose writer known for deeply researched works about female Russian soldiers in World War II and the aftermath of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, won the Nobel Prize in Literature on Thursday “for her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time,” the Swedish Academy announced. (The other day the Nobel was implicitly given to history, 23 centuries old. If they recognize history, the Nobel folks may as well recognize reality.)

Ms. Alexievich,67, 14th woman to win the literature prize, is a rarity: her sparse work is mainly nonfiction.

Work Makes Free: the Murderous Nazi Thieves’ Outrageous Slogan. The Reality of Nazism Ought To Have Beaten To Death The Soft Fiction Of Deluded Humanism

Work Makes Free: the Murderous Nazi Thieves’ Outrageous Slogan. The Reality of Nazism Ought To Have Beaten To Death The Soft Fiction Of Deluded Humanism

Yes, in World War Two, short in skilled personnel, the USSR used women in combat. Some even commanded tanks. And it’s mostly with tanks, better tanks, but maybe at the cost of twenty million soldiers killed in combat, that the Soviet Union beat Nazi Germany. I remember reading an Italian non-fiction book. After hard fighting in Ukraine, the author was stunned to see a beautiful Russian blonde dead in her punctured tank (not her tank top, her T34 tank). Take that, fiction authors! Where is your reality?

What’s literature? “Litera”, original Latin for “letter” came to mean ‘document’ and ‘letter, epistle’. “Literatura” is ‘writing formed with letters, book learning’. Nothing there said it has to be fiction. However in French literary circles, ‘literature’ has come to mean ‘fiction’. I view fiction as, mostly, an inferior sort. It is to reality what pornography is to sex. And not even that.

Any fiction is inspired by reality: after all, reality is where minds come from. However, confusing fiction with reality can be a trap. The authors of fiction who are known made their work marketable (otherwise they would not be known). But marketing is not enticing with thinking: it entices with seduction. Marketing perverts thinking, it’s sugar for canned minds.

And a canned mind, is not a kind mind. Or, more exactly, a canned mind is as good as the can it is in. Beware of cans, especially of the mental type: after a while, they turn bad, and fester with live toxins.

In contrast, by evoking reality, one can dare to go where the market does not want to go, and where the market cannot go. Facts are facts, they are not made to be comfortable. Facts are, all too often, not something one wants to buy. Why? Because we have turned into a society which confuses market and civilization. We ask, we tolerate to have the “markets” of everything and guide us.

It was high time the Nobel literature committee recognize that being able to present reality, especially reality in all its harshness, is more important than presenting someone’s fiction as if it were reality (as novelists are wont to do with wanton abandonment!) In one case, sticking to reality, one tries to stick to what is, and in the other, confusing reality and fiction, one admittedly do away with reality, at the outset, and replace reality with what can be sold to the little minds of the shoppers, avid and standardized.

Humanity has to be educated. This is what literature is for. Literature is not just intellectual masturbation. Too much sugar for too long makes one sick, and it’s a modern disease (one aspect is called diabetes, and kills, ages and degenerates its victims). Sugar drinks ought to be rejected. Similarly all too easy, all too comfortable fiction. Bring forth reality, the maker of worlds.

Considering reality, in full, is uncomfortable.

What do people foresee if the West Antarctic Ice Shield (WAIS), the Wilkes Basin and the Aurora Basin all collapse at the same time? Sea level may augment as fast as one meter per year.

I speculate: that’s 30 times faster than the most recent peer-reviewed scientific papers by specialists.

I speculate, but in full cognizance of striking elements of reality, catastrophes such as the sudden flooding of the Black Sea region, or flooding of the Mediterranean Basin, or the collapse of the Hudson Bay ice shield, or the Younger Dryas’ sudden collapse of the Gulf Stream current, and so on.

What I foresee is a quick adaptation of most values, as Homo Sapiens will present the largest biomass which one could possibly exploit. How quaint today’s fiction will then seem!

Knowing the world feeds the imagination. Knowing only fiction literature is getting to know only the minds of the fashionable and marketable, and how they learned to seduce the commons. Yet, reality is not common. The wise needs more: reality in full.

Patrice Ayme’

The Folly Of Big Science Prizes

October 6, 2015

The New York Times published an article with that idea, a recurring theme on this site. It had very interesting content, adding to my general position, which the Times had the unusual kindness to publish. Here it is:

Why science prizes? To create celebrities in science, and thus, to make science famous, some point out.

But surely the reason for science ought not to be fame, but the search for truth? Therein the problem: using the celebrity principle, that fame matters most, one overwhelms the very reason for science, which is that truth matters most.

Prizes in science teach the identification of fame with truth.

We Are Far From Understanding Sun’s Thermonuclear Physics. Coronal Mass Ejection, Aug. 31, 2012. Such a CME Would Wreck Civilization, If Pointed At Earth

We Are Far From Understanding Sun’s Thermonuclear Physics. Coronal Mass Ejection, Aug. 31, 2012. Such a CME Would Wreck Civilization, If Pointed At Earth

Civilization depends upon truth, thus science. The confusion between fame and truth brought the near-collapse of civilization before.

Aristotle (320 BCE) taught physics which was obviously false (Aristotle taught that a force had to be continually applied for continuous motion; Buridan overturned this in 1320 CE). I have argued that the very fact that Aristotle’s physics was obviously false taught the suspension of common sense (and that was exactly what the powers that be wanted!)

However, because Aristotle was immensely famous, his false physics was viewed as the obvious truth. In turn, because Aristotle’s physics was so stupendous, Aristotle’s erroneous ideas in politics (that monarchy, thus dictatorship, was the best political system) were viewed as obviously true, too. In turn, these false ideas were used to demolish the idea of the Republic for more than two millennia.

Hence we can see who confusing fame with science advantages: those who view fame as the end all, be all. Naturally enough, celebrities set-up prizes to celebrate celebrity. In turn, such people are the best and most obsequious servants to the established order. And this is exactly why, throughout history, some of the worst tyrants have heaped praise on the few (and especially those they made famous).

There are more huge prizes in science nowadays, because some of the most influential people in the world today have a very dark, sinister and troubling relationship with science.

In turn a reader, “RamS”, had the kindness to offer the following compliment: “This is the best comment, and this is the real issue the author is worried about. It is not the prize but the fame that comes with…”

Here is how The Folly of Big Science Awards, by VINAY PRASADOCT started:

“On Monday, the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine will go to a few scientists for work that untangles the intricacies of the human body and may advance treatments for cancer, heart disease or other major illnesses. The prize comes with a sizable check and virtually ensures that the winners’ research will be well funded for the rest of their careers.

Every recent recipient has undoubtedly deserved the honor. But that doesn’t mean that prizes for medical research are a good idea.

The Nobel, along with the Dickson, Lasker-DeBakey, Canada Gairdner and other major awards, honors the scientists who are usually in the least need of recognition and funding, which squeezes out opportunities for other scientists.

More important, by emphasizing the importance of scientific breakthroughs — serendipitous occurrences that rely on decades of research — these prizes play down, and diminish, the way that great medical advances build on one another.

All scholarship is, to some extent, built on prior work — but this is especially true in scientific research.”

This is exactly why I have fought the hyper celebrity status of Copernicus and Newton. Copernicus’ work, viewed on a historical scale, is little more than plagiarism from Buridan (who was madatorily taught at the university where Copernicus was an undergraduate). Similarly, although Newton was giant, he invented neither his so-called first nor second law (that was Buridan again), nor the universal attraction law (as he himself insisted he did not).

Mis-attributing discoveries is not just a question of justice. It is a question of falsifying the causality chain of evidence, and the very way the human mind works. Thus it undermines science, by giving the impression “excellence” is just a matter of the solitary genius. In truth, “excellence” is a matter of civilization.

Actually Ms. Tu, who just got the Nobel in Medicine, pointed this out. By reading a two thousand year old treaty, she had realized that her method of preparation — boiling the wormwood — damaged the active ingredient. She then prepared it using an ether-based solvent, which boils at 35 degrees Celsius. When tested on mice and monkeys, it proved 100 percent effective.

Dr. Tu, with two colleagues, were the first human subjects. Suffering no ill effects, she conducted clinical trials with patients.

“We had just cured drug-resistant malaria,” Dr. Tu told New Scientist in an interview in 2011,“we were very excited.”

In spite of her very important success, Dr. Tu was later shunned by the Chinese scientific establishment, for her lack of a PhD. The “PhD” is a stamp certifying one belongs to a tribe.

However, researchers who are truly extremely original tend to not have a network, or less of a network (“scientists” and “thinkers” always exist; simply, in some periods of history, lasting centuries or more, they can all be wrong, in no small part from pleasing the oligarchies above… When the oligarchies themselves do not think that they think enough for all of society… As seems to be happening in the West presently, from lack of a dissenting intellectual class!)

Prasad gives a detailed example of how celebritism masks the thinking process:

“Consider James P. Allison, the winner of this year’s Lasker-DeBakey prize in clinical medical research. His work helped clarify one way cancer cells hide from the immune system.

Around 1990, a team of scientists found a protein on the surface of immune cells and proposed that it stimulated the immune system. Dr. Allison’s lab and a third group suggested that the protein put the brakes on immune responses. A fourth group confirmed that it halted the immune system, rather than stimulating it. Dr. Allison later showed that blocking this protein with an antibody could unleash an immune response in animals that could lead not only to rejection of but also immunity to many kinds of cancers. A decade later, similar antibodies to this protein and other related ones were found to prevail against several types of human cancers.

Dr. Allison’s work is surely impressive. But it occurred alongside and in dialogue with a number of related findings. Researchers analyzed the citations that led to Dr. Allison’s drug and concluded that it relied on work conducted by 7,000 scientists at 5,700 institutions over a hundred-year period. Yet only he was recognized.”

People are social primates, they are ambitious. The most meditative and contemplative ones tend to produce the breakthroughs, those who are more ambitious tend to exploit them.

Prasad: “The prize industry contributes to a deeper problem in scientific research: We throw resources at a privileged few who have already achieved enormous fame.

…80 percent of research funds in basic medical sciences are concentrated among the top fifth of researchers… We especially need to dispel this myth now because the scientific community is in the midst of a replication crisis. Nearly all published medical papers report significant or positive results, but many efforts to duplicate the findings failed… The regular occurrence of false leads also hints at the enormous role serendipity plays in discoveries, which some Nobel Prize winners have acknowledged in their acceptance speeches. In one study of 101 basic science discoveries published in top journals that claimed a drug had promise, just five led to approved drugs.

… science is hard. It’s like exploring an unknown land; we’ll never know whether over the next hill lies an expansive vista or just another hill. A finding that seems mundane or trivial may become immensely important years later… Or we could break up big prizes and give out many smaller awards. This may be more effective in supporting science, a view shared by Terence Tao, a mathematician who won $3 million from the inaugural Breakthrough Prize in Mathematics but tried to talk the man who gave it to him into spreading it around to more people. Alternately, instead of giving out big science awards, let’s use the prize money to study better ways to fund science.”

I have excoriated the Breakthrough Prize (although Tao himself is a great mathematician competing with computers… Some of the “discoveries” that prize celebrated are probably… errors).

Prize money is not about science. It’s about celebrating the oligarchic principle. If we want a great scientific society, we need a great scientific mood, all over the land. And that means, first of all, no BS.

Today the physics Nobel was given for the oscillation of neutrinos. For the reason that authorities (of physics) had proclaimed neutrinos had no mass (that augmented the authorities of the authorities, as they were talking as if they were gods), it had been decided neutrinos could not oscillate (until major discrepancies were found in the Sun’s output).

Can we colonize Mars? Interestingly, there is a connection with a refined knowledge of neutrino physics. At least, so I think.

We do not just like science, because our species evolved into truth machines. Truth has always been necessary to, although not sufficient for, survival. With existing technology, and the eight billion humans we enjoy, we can neither quite colonize Mars, nor survive on Earth (except as a much more reduced population).

Science is not a call, it’s a life raft. The one and only. And thus less folly in its financing is not just a question of reason, but of morality. Pure and simple.

Patrice Ayme’

Dynamiting Reality: Nobel to Palmyra

October 5, 2015

Nobel’s family searched and discovered dynamite, suffering fatalities and making a great fortune. Nobel came to live in France for decades.  Nitroglycerin, a liquid, was a much more powerful explosive than black powder. However, it explodes readily when shaken, a trait which blew to bits many an artist of explosive arts, and made transportation of said liquid highly eventful.  Dynamite allowed to infuse brick with nitroglycerin, and thus made it very stable. “Dynamiteros” soon appeared, and the art of war became much more explosive. Once, Nobel’s death was erroneously announced. A livid Nobel read banner titles on French newspapers such as: “Le marchand de la mort est mort.” (The merchant of death is dead). Ulcerated, and having no worthy relative, Nobel decided to leave his fortune for prizes in science (not in math, as Nobel’s wife had eloped with a famous mathematician).

However good Nobel’s intentions, we may wonder if history, if the correct mood with which to consider progress, do not keep on being dynamited in the process.

History Rearranged With Dynamite : Islam & Nobel Bring You A New World, Unlike the Real World

History Rearranged With Dynamite : Islam & Nobel Bring You A New World, Unlike the Real World

The triumphal arch of Palmyra has been “pulverized” by Islamists: thus now tens of millions of Islamists drones will be able to tell you that Islam invented civilization.

The Nobel prize in medicine was attributed to a Chinese woman, Tu Youyou who brought Artemisinin up to date. Artemisinin is not a new remedy against malaria. its antimalarial action was first described, in Zhouhou Beiji Fang (“The Handbook of Prescriptions for Emergencies”, Chinese: 肘后备急方, in 340 BCE by Ge Hong; in that book, 43 malaria treatment methods were recorded. Ge Hong wrote that this herb should be steeped in cold water: “A handful of qinghao immersed with two litres of water, wring out the juice and drink it all.” Tu’s team of the People Liberation Army subsequently isolated a useful extract. Tu recognizes the history. Does the Nobel committee recognize it? Probably not. The Nobel guys have made a point to deny history (the prize is not given to dead people… Although one of the two, and very dead discoverer of the so-called “Higgs” particle was mentioned).

The genus name of the plant is derived from the Greek goddess Artemis. It was probably named after Queen Artemisia II of Caria, a botanist and medical researcher in the fourth century BCE (known for celebrating her husband cum brother, Mausoleus).

I am not against people getting prizes for discovering something. I am against not recognizing the processes and moods which lead to the discoveries. Or recognizing the thousands of other people, even the generations who contributed, because this masks the real nature of discovery: a vast, communal effort.

Maybe that is exactly what the Nobel committee tried to say. But it should make more of an effort, and start at least offering Nobel to more than 3 people, and posthumously too (even with no money attached).

[To Be Continued…]

Patrice Ayme’

Anti-plutocratic Tirolean to Common Sense?

October 13, 2014

Is this site attributing the Nobels?

It sure looks like it: I approve strongly of three Nobels in a row. Amazing. On Friday, the Nobel was attributed to a French writer who worries a lot about Nazism, Modiano. Then there was the anti-sexist, anti-Islamist Peace Prize to Malala.

Today professor Tirole, a French economist at the public university in Toulouse, got the Nobel in economics. Mr. Tirole pondered the best regulations so that large, powerful firms in industries such as banking and communications would act in society’s interest. that’s one of my familiar themes, and I go much further.

It’s the first Nobel in economy in 10 years who is not a citizen of the USA. Are we in an increasingly terrible socio-economic situation just from that monopoly? Tirole is the most American of French economists: a “polytechnicien”, he got an economy PhD from MIT.

He is depicted as “liberal” (right wing pro-capitalist in French parlance), because he believes in share holders’ rights, and that corporations should just worry about profits. As an extreme left wing progressive nut, I, paradoxically, agree with both points.

However how do I reconcile this with what I call “governmentalism”? Well, they go hand in hand.

According to governmentalism, the main actor in economics is the government. That’s pretty much obvious and was even true on Caribbean islands ruled by pirates: pirates, too, had government, and it ruled their economy (and that’s true to this day, except the pirates use finance instead of swords).

Much of what passes today for the free market is little more than global monopolies, organized crime and deregulated madness.

Jean Tirole, defending the real owners, the shareholders, has done important work exposing executive overcompensation, what I call the CEO class, and over-greedy corporate hegemony.

Here is the introduction of Roland Bénabou and Jean Tirole’s “working” paper on the “Bonus Culture: Competitive Pay, Screening, and Multitasking”. (Executive overcompensation, etc.):

“Recent years have seen a literal explosion of pay, both in levels and in di¤erentials, at the top echelons of many occupations. Large bonuses and salaries are needed, it is typically said, to retain “talent” and “top performers” in finance, corporations, medicine, academia, as well as to incentivize them to perform to the best of their high abilities. Paradoxically, this trend has been accompanied by mounting revelations of poor actual performance, severe moral hazard and even outright fraud in those same sectors. Oftentimes these behaviors impose negative spillovers on the rest of society (e.g., bank bailouts), but even when not, the firms involved themselves ultimately suffer: large trading losses, declines in stock value, loss of reputation and consumer goodwill, regulatory fines and legal liabilities, or even bankruptcy.

This paper proposes a resolution of the puzzle, by showing how competition for the most productive workers can interact with the incentive structure inside firms to undermine work ethics–the extent to which agents “do the right thing” beyond what their material self-interest commands. More generally, the underlying idea is that highly competitive labor markets make it difficult for employers to strike the proper balance between the benefits and costs of high-powered incentives. The result is a “bonus culture” that takes over the workplace, generating distorted decisions and significant efficiency losses, particularly in the long run. To make this point we develop a model that combines multitasking, screening and imperfect competition, thus making a methodological contribution in the process.”

Philosophically it can be explained and said much more simply: a culture of greed has taken over.

One should even say a MOOD of greed takes over. Considering recent discoveries in ethology and epigenetics, hell itself is the bottom of that abyss.

Indeed. Just like some fishes, according to circumstances, modify their genetics, and females turn into males, and some males even in “super males”, the top officers of today’s society turned into predators predating onto the rest of society.

It was high time that some authorities (and the Nobel committee is a small sort of authority) recognizes something in that direction. The work of reflection is just beginning.

The philosophy of banking has not been mulled enough. Nor that, more generally, of mighty corporations.

Those are gigantic institutions with a para-governmental role. They are big enough to influence governments, society, law enforcement, and the law itself. The immensely rich heads of major corporations are received by heads of states, as if they were other heads of state.

Yet, officially, banks and corporations are not led by the social good, and other higher principles, but by greed. Just greed. When those greedsters are celebrated as if they were statesmen, “philanthropists”, or even philosophers or “geniuses”, greed is recognized as philanthropic, and genial.

The less we regulate those giant corporations, the more powerful they get, and the more they can change the mind of civilization itself, towards greed. For example executives of Google were loud, clear, and acknowledged by the British government itself, to be of great influence in deciding educational programs: they are credited for making coding mandatory at age 5 in all schools.

Are Britons to become all little googlers? Ogling the mighty founders of Google, who travel the world in their personal jumbo jets, while paying no significant taxes, and being received by heads of states on their knees, another proof of their genius?

Yet Google siphons its multi-billion Euros profits in Europe through Ireland, to lower its tax bill, and then send said profits to paradise islands with no taxation whatsoever. In other words, Google seems to be an organized crime corporation, as it avoids paying tax nearly entirely. Mafias, and other crime syndicates can only admire such brazen arrogance, and no doubt envy Google after tax profit margins.

European regulators condemned Google for cheating with its search engine, to bring itself even more profits, and now say that Google is ignoring their pleas. Yet, we are putting the fate of youngsters under Google’s maniacal guidance.

This is just Google, the Do Evil company.

All other mighty corporations are applying similar tricks. GE, the oldest company in the Dow Jones, paid no tax for years. Disneyland France, the number one entertainment center in Europe, claimed giant losses, and had to be rescued by Disney (while forgetting to say said losses were from paying giant fees to Disney itself, probably re-routed through some tax heaven).

The situation with the banking system is even worse. As Marx noticed, banks have a monopoly. He left it at that. Now we need to talk.

A monopoly of what? Banks create most of the money. Thanks to the states.

So here we have people, the bankers, unelected and unsupervised, who do not have to justify themselves, operating in secrecy, who, through credit, give most of the money which exists in the world, to whoever they like. It turns out, they love themselves.

And, officially, all the motivation that this sort of secret government, by corporations, for corporations, has, is greed.

Time to ask them question, observe, study, and regulate them.

Economy does not need any more equation to burnish its reputation as a pseudo-science. Economy needs a thorough rethinking, of a philosophical nature.

Otherwise the employment situation, which Tirole, after getting his prize, just described as “catastrophic” will only get worse.

Employment is, of course, a crucial pillar of democracy: no employment, no democracy. The economy is more now about plutocracy than anything else: Tirole and company have lifted just a little bit of the veil.

Patrice Ayme’

Rosalind Franklin: Be A Blossom Of Wisdom

June 29, 2014

Rosalind Franklin, born in Notting Hill, London, was from a wealthy Jewish British family. Armed with a PhD, she spent nearly 5 years studying X ray technique in Paris. Back in Cambridge, she made a succession of discoveries, including the double helix structure of DNA.

Franklin died at the age of 38, a victim from ovarian cancer. I would venture to say that it is likely she got the disease from her work with radiation (as Nobels Marie and Irene Curie clearly did).

Rosalind, 4 Years After Elucidating the Double Helix

Rosalind, 4 Years After Elucidating the Double Helix

Is the human condition a vacation from nothingness? We live, and, in the long run, we die. So what do we live for? Fundamentally, because life is what animals are, that’s what they do. Yet, humans know they will evaporate. So, in their case, there is more: an esthetical choice.

They know their lives, in a way, are gratuitous acts. All proportion kept, they are like those insects who fly around just one day. Humans are erased as they die. The God illusion was invented to deny this. Yet, increasingly, most people do not believe in it, and never did.

So what to live for?

For eons, people learned all they could, and the best were called Shamans. They tried to transmit the knowledge and stories to their (spiritual) descendants. For at least 50,000 years, that process, a continual re-invention of the human condition, ruled. It was no doubt achingly painful for shamans to transmit the wisdom, before they died, and see it all slip back.

Visible progress accelerated only with the invention of civilization, herding and agriculture (in which order is not too clear; wolves certainly came first, at least 50,000 years ago, at least that’s my Neanderthal wolf theory).

Nowadays have writing. Writing was painfully evolved over the eons, and started with painting and other pictorial representations (as Robinson imagines in his book linked to above). We cannot just examine our existence, nowadays, but also the past.

“The results suggest a helical structure (which must be very closely packed) containing probably 2, 3 or 4 coaxial nucleic acid chains per helical unit and having the phosphate groups near the outside.” — Rosalind Franklin, official report, February 1952.

Franklin’s two manuscripts on the double helix DNA reached Acta Crystallographica in Copenhagen on 6 March 1953, one day before Watson & Crick completed their model saying what she wrote months prior.

The details on how Franklin made the discovery of the double helical structure of DNA are complex. The guy who stole her work, to give it to Watson and Crick, Wilkins, had suggested an helix. He probably wanted to exact vengeance on Franklin, who he viewed, erroneously, as having stolen the show, and a PhD student of his. Franklin was actually acting under orders from the head of the lab, who did not bother to warn Wilkins. Wilkins stole Franklin’s famous Photograph 51, and gave it secretly to Watson & Crick.

People who had stolen Rosalind Franklin’s work, were published first in the magazine Nature, although her earlier discoveries were fundamental (to the thieves). The thieves got the Nobel after her death, and insulted her, post mortem, just to make sure that their forfeiture would reign unchallenged (by the same way, in recent years, Watson was widely condemned for racist theories: nastiness is a way of life).

Grotesquely, but tellingly, the Nobels don’t mention prior discoverers. So Franklin was ignored. That makes this Nobel prize a tool of manipulative conspiracies, from the usual suspects. Just as Copernic and Newton are attributed discoveries that were made centuries EARLIER, not mentioning deceased discoverers allow to mangle the history of systems of thought, in arcane, but efficient ways.

That despicable tradition was (slightly) changed for the egregious case of the so called Higgs particle; a prior Belgian discoverer, by then deceased, was mentioned. But the particle is still called a Higgs, because Anglo-American white males are supposed to be dominant in most ways intellectual… Thus in all other ways.

Raping women is an old tradition, most fruitful.

A French professor called, Lejeune, a Catholic fanatic close to John Paul II was the guy who stole credit for discovering trisomy 21. Sleazy behavior like that qualifies automatically for sainthood in the Catholic church. It’s an old tradition started by the killing of Hypatia, an Egyptian female Einstein of 16 centuries ago, by Saint Cyril and his rape murdering sadistic goons.

So Lejeune was fast-tracked for sainthood. Unfortunately for the sleaze ball, his victim, differently from Franklin is still alive (although 88 years old, and having, as she says, better things to do than fighting for recognition, but viewing as a duty to set the record straight ).

The real discoverer of the chromosomal anomaly was a woman, Marthe Gautier, who had done all the cell work that led to the identification of the supplementary chromosome. She had learned in Harvard some ways of manipulating cells, and brought her knowledge back to Paris. She got a bit of space, some rudimentary equipment, and cultured cells using serum derived from her own blood. The same story happened as with Franklin: her pictures were stolen, and Lejeune presented them as his own.

That controversy was well known, so the Nobel committee did not attribute a Nobel for that major discovery, the first explicit roll-out of a genetic abnormality, and its exact mechanism.

It helped that all the discoverers, real or imaginary, were French: one of the missions of the Nobels is to prove the superiority of Anglo-American thinking, and thus of Vulture Funds over Argentina. Hence all the caviar in Manhattan.

Hey, corrupt Nobel clowns! Marthe Gautier is still alive! What about rewarding her, finally? It would be encouraging to all the women out there, who work hard in matters intellectual. Or, at least, it would make you look less corrupt with power and influence.

Here is a letter of Rosalind Franklin to Ellis Franklin, her father. It has no date, possibly summer 1940 whilst Rosalind was an undergraduate at Cambridge University.

“You look at science (or at least talk of it) as some sort of demoralising invention of man, something apart from real life, and which must be cautiously guarded and kept separate from everyday existence. But science and everyday life cannot and should not be separated. Science, for me, gives a partial explanation for life. In so far as it goes, it is based on fact, experience and experiment.”

Rosalind lived like a thinking rose. It’s the best choice we all have. The best metaphysics worth having. We are all roses, and may as well make beauty, the beauty of minds well blossomed, the pinnacle of creation.

Patrice Aymé

Nobel, Not Noble.

October 15, 2013

Hysterical celebrations of the hypernationalistic commentators in the USA heaping spite upon the feeble intellects of the rest of the planet, in light of the attributions of Nobel Prizes mostly to Americans. “Nobels and National Greatness Anyone who thinks America’s best days are behind it should take a close look at the latest Nobel haul,” crows Mr. Stephens in the WSJ.

It does not dawn on the naïve Mr. Stephens, that the Nobel prize may be an indication of bias, not excellence. A mark of propaganda, thus weakness, not a proof of superiority.

All The Pie To US Plutocrats, Glorious We Are.

The Nobel prize ought to be renamed the “American prize”. Main qualification: being an “American”, preferably from Chicago, and preach Americanization (also known as plutocratization). Look at the Nobel in economics: two of them, although charming fellows, got the prize for repeating notions that were well known more than four centuries ago, in the Netherlands (tulip mania!) or Japan (rice commodity market).

In other words, the Nobel is, at least plenty of times, given for trivial reasons.

Two of the Nobels are, of course, from the temple of plutocratic economics, the University of Chicago. Obama taught at that “private” university. As befits an organization smelling of sulfur, it sits in the middle of a ghetto, an oasis of privilege in the desert of the underclass, with a police call box every fifty meters, or so (when I was there, for a few weeks, I was shocked by the brutality of this apartheid world, with privilege 100 meters from people with no health care, no job, not even an ounce of rebellion in them).

Renaming the Nobel the “American prize” would be honest and revealing, thus completely inacceptable, as with plutocracy dissimulation and invisibility is of the essence.

The Chinese born ranking of universities is riddled with tricks to make universities of the USA look good, relatively speaking. For example French Nobels are counted… half for the universities they work for (the  reasons invoked are devious, such as how French research is financed).

Why? Well the same reason that China holds 1.3 trillion dollars of USA bonds: another bond binding within the plutocratic system. If socialist France looks stupid, and the plutocratic USA look good, that’s excellent for the Chinese plutocracy, whose fortunes are determined in Washington, ever since Nixon and Kissinger saw to it.

Another example: Switzerland has 22 Nobels in science. France, with ten times the population, only 35. However, Switzerland is not, historically speaking, the author of major breakthroughs in science and technology. By “major” I mean really major, such as pasteurization, E = mcc, or the invention of the transistor. Suisse seemed not to have been the author of ANY technological breakthrough. France is.

(OK, I am unfair: a Swiss invented the first internal explosion engine, using hydrogen, in the early 19C! It’s the French Papin who invented the first steam engine and steam boat, in the 17C; see “Philosophy Feeds Engineering”)

So what is taught, and impressed upon, is lots of lies, and false truths. Take aviation: France dominated it by 1910, even with the first helicopter. But were not the Wright brothers Americans? Sure, and the Wrights invented a number of useful devices. However, the first motorized flights were made 13 years earlier, using a light weight steam engine, in a French military program (Clement Ader). Some said: oh, they were not that high, etc. However that proof of principle incited full-on progress.

If nobody talks about who invented movies, that’s because the Lumière brothers  showed the first movies in 1895. The world’s oldest movie theater, in the French Riviera city of La Ciotat, was just reopened.

The transistor was invented in Germany in the 1930s (using… Germanium, not silicon).

Some will object: ah, but Switzerland had Albert Einstein (more or less refugee from Germany), and he invented E = mcc, it’s well known. While in Bern, working at the Patent Office (thanks to the father of a friend of his).

My point entirely. Well known, Einstein’s E = mcc, but somewhat of a cheat: as far as I, me, can see, Einstein actually stole both the formula and the proof from the E = mc^2 work published by Poincare’ in 1900, five years earlier.

Poincare’ proved E = mcc, not in an obscure blog, but as a peer reviewed article, in the most well known Dutch Physics Journal (Lorentz, a Dutch who wrote the space-time transformation law was from there, Poincare’ got him the Nobel by 1904, and this explained why Poincare’ published in a Dutch journal).

So why is E = mcc Einstein’s formula and not Poincare”s? Because reality in the dominant Anglo-Saxon-Germanoid culture has a well known anti-French bias. Much better to have a German Jew the author of E= mc^2 than some super genius Frenchman. Nobody fears German Jews (they had some problems, except for the likes of Kissinger). But the French republic is a different matter entirely. It’s still out there, squat and ferocious, always spastic with chronic plutophobia.

A rough and tough idea, but something to munch on.

To admit that a Frenchman found the most famous formula in physics would threaten the established order of thoughts and moods. By changing how frogs are considered, it may endanger Wall Street, New York, Washington, Americanization, even plutocratization itself…

If a Frenchman has had colossal brains, it would tell us, that, if there is one super genius Frenchman, there might be more, and thus a Financial Transaction Tax may not be such a bad idea. France has a FTT. Or maybe a Carbon Tax would be a good idea. France has such a tax.

And France of course invented the Added Value Tax, now replicated in dozens of countries, even Japan, and much disliked by the Mafia and the like. Imagine American plutocrats having to pay tax, automatically: a world would shatter.

Or maybe default, as the USA practiced in 1933, followed by a variety of countries using similar unsavory means of re-establishing their finances, would not look as such a great idea anymore (alone among super powers, France did not devalue and default in the 1930s; Germany went further, stealing all the German Jews… France playing honest was, of course, a tremendous disadvantage, she ended poor, and soon beaten up, with no help from the resentful president Roosevelt, except late enough so that France would have been thoroughly beaten up first).

By depriving the French of intellectual honors due to them, the official plutocratic propaganda can insist that French frogs have no brains, and never bathe. Thus Obamacare is much superior to French style Medicare For All (which is what France’s Assurance Maladie is).

And bias does not stop at France.

Bose, a young Indian genius, who got the idea of bosons, the force particles, with their weird statistics, never got the Nobel in physics: because British imperialists objected to Bose’s opinions in matters political. 

So what do we see? Lots of Nobels in the USA’s “private” universities (actually not really private, but financed deviously through the entangled plutocratic and state systems). Does that mean those people got the most fundamental ideas? Not so sure.

When Eric Kandel went to Paris, he spent a year learning to work with Aplysia, and later got the Nobel for his remarkable work on learning… Learning of Aplysia. However, did the Paris teachers got the Nobel? No. Who started that flow of research and originated the basic ideas? Not necessarily Kandel.

And so on. In many fields, most people sitting in the Nobel committee are American, and colossal amounts of money are involved, so maybe the Nobel ought to be called the “American prize”, a bit like the “Academy Awards”.

It  would be most profitable, in the realm of ideas, to determine who and how the best and deepest ideas arose. Start by attributing the discovery of the First Law of Newton, the law of inertia, to Buridan, who discovered and advertized it, three centuries before Newton was born. Buridan was the rector of the university of Paris, adviser to kings (among others), contradictor of Aristotle, and discovered Copernicus’s work 170 years before it was taught to Copernicus at the university of Cracow, where Copernicus was a student.   

What truly count, for intellectual superiority, is, who got the big idea first, and how deep. A whole science of creativity could rise from finding how great ideas arise. The rest is propaganda at best, and outright thievery, racism and hatred, at worst.

How did the Nobel arise?

Nobel was heir to a plutocratic family wealthy from ammunitions. Nobel had established 90 armaments factories by the time of his death. Yes, ninety. A terrible explosion at  one of these killed a younger brother. Still another brother died in 1888.

A French newspaper clamored Le marchand de la mort est mort” (“The merchant of death is dead”)… Dr. Alfred Nobel, who became rich by finding ways to kill more people faster than ever before, died yesterday.”

Alfred, who was long a resident of France, and in Cannes at the time, was mortified. Was it all what he was? A death merchant? Nobel got very depressed, and laid lonely and supine with his dark thoughts. How could he make his life worthy?

On 27 November 1895, at the Swedish-Norwegian Club in Paris, Nobel signed his last will and testament. He set aside the bulk of his estate to establish the Nobel Prizes, to be awarded annually without distinction of nationality.

However, there is clearly a national bias now, as Shelling, one of this year’s Nobels, would be the first to admit. Worse than that: it’s a plutocratic bias, exactly what Nobel, nobly, did not want to leave behind.

Remedy? The way the Nobel laureates are selected now guarantees a plutocratic bias (the richest universities are over-represented in the advisory committees).

The Nobel committees should thus explain much more their little reasonings in attributing the prizes, by writing vey long essays justifying their decisions, and who, exactly originated the ideas.

A timid step in that direction was made this year with the Physics prize (the contribution of the late Robert Brout was acknowledged). Also the prize ought to be attributed for as many people as necessary for one given idea, and attributed posthumously (at least in a honorific way; once again mentioning Brout was good, but not enough: he published the “Higgs” mechanism a full month before Higgs).

The Nobel is a carrot. One would instruct the world better by explaining why that carrot is exactly deserved, all the way back. And not just give it to the richest and most powerful. After all, his name is Pluto, and He lays down the abyss.

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Patrice Ayme