Saturday, October 29, 2005

LA Times Headlines Jan.29, 1934: Lizard People's LA Underground City

LA Times Headlines Jan.29, 1934: Lizard People's LA Underground City:
"The Hopi Indians of northern Arizona have traditions that recall a time when their 'Snake Brothers' built and occupied underground cities in Arizona, California, Mexico and Central America. Once such underworld city is believed to have been built on the west coast, near the Pacific ocean, under Los Angeles, California.

Strangely enough, one engineers search for LA's mythological underground city gained enough credibility to have his efforts presented as front page news in the Los Angeles Times newspaper, January 29th, 1934..."

Culture and Ideology are not your friends

Podcasts from the Psychedelic Salon . . . :
"Culture and Ideology are not your Friends

A talk by
Terence McKenna
Denver - April 1999

'This is a struggle between novelty and habit.' . . . '[Your culture] is the greatest barrier to your enlightenment, your education, and your decency.' . . . Cultures are virtual realities made of language.'"

Transmetropolitan: graphic novels that redefine journalism

One of my favorite series ever...

Review - Transmetropolitan: graphic novels that redefine journalism:
"Written by Warren Ellis with illustrations by Darick Robertson, the Transmetropolitan series is sure to leave you thinking. With introductions written by actor Patrick Stuart and Darren Aronofsky, director of Pi and Requiem for a Dream, these are not your kids' comic books. These are brutally drawn, intensely written graphic novels designed to appeal to intelligent and free-thinking adults.

Spider Jerusalem, the anti-hero of the Transmetropolitan series, does not immediately inspire confidence in his character or his journalistic methods. Having sequestered himself in his private compound on a lushly wooded mountain, Spider is not so politely informed by his editor that he must complete his contract for two books. He must return to the city he escaped from because Spider can only write in the bustle and dysfunction of a gritty urban environment. In the meantime, Spider must go back to work for the 'Word,' the city's high-profile newspaper, to support himself and gather material.

And so Transmetropolitan begins.

The city Spider returns to (presumably New York) is not any city we recognize. Set some undefined distance in the future, the city represents the worst of cities as we know them today and the path they might be following should poverty, corrupt politics and unbridled technological advancements proceed without intervention.

Spider is not pretty to look at, either. Temperamental, violent and fond of mood enhancers and firearms, Spider seems set for self-destruction. He proves himself a highly capable investigative reporter, though, and sets about uncovering the truth behind the city's dehabilitating ills in a world run by despotic politicians and corporate media..."

Treehugger: Kiva - Make History One-to-One

Treehugger: Kiva - Make History One-to-One:
"...Kiva is an innovative financing model, almost akin to you putting the money into the hands of those who really need it. On the Kiva website you’ll find profiles of entrepreneurs... Simply use your credit card, or Paypal account, to loan them funds and your money goes to work for their business. “In-country' staff vet the applicants and monitor their progress, posting regular updates against that businesses profile...

Loan terms last 6 to 12 months, with 95% of developing world micro-finance loans having a record for being fully repaid. When half of the world’s population live on less than $2 a day, this is a much more practical way to Make Poverty History than wearing some rubbery bracelet. There are already 30 million existing micro-finance borrowers out there, but they represent less than 10% of those looking for loan assistance. You may not be Bob Geldof or Bono, but starting with just $25 USD you could certainly help loosen those shackles of poverty, in a very personal way. This is not an anonymous charity donation, it's one human supporting another. Thanks to tipster Dane B, for reminding us to add our ‘Three Cheers’ to the blogsphere congratulations, being heaped upon Jessica and Matthew Flannery, for their inspirational work."

Overheard in the Office: The Voice of the Cubicle - 4PM I'm Objectively Done for the Week

Overheard in the Office: The Voice of the Cubicle - 4PM I'm Objectively Done for the Week:
"4PM I'm Objectively Done for the Week

Art Director: It's hard to be objective when you only see the universe from your point of view.

250 Redwood Shores Parkway
Redwood City, California"

The Dilbert Blog: Mad About the Wrong Things

The Dilbert Blog: Mad About the Wrong Things:
"Maybe it’s the way I was raised, but I find that I get mad about all the wrong things. For example, when I hear a news report about some serial killer who buried 43 victims in an underground bunker that he constructed beneath his shed, my first reaction is Wow. He built an underground bunker under a shed! I find myself admiring his industriousness and passion in the pursuit of his dreams. That’s clearly wrong..."

Meds today, in 2000 B.C. surprisingly comparable

KRT Wire | 10/28/2005 | Meds today, in 2000 B.C. surprisingly comparable:
"...Studying medical texts inscribed in cuneiform, the first system of writing, Chicago researchers JoAnn Scurlock and Burton Andersen found the physicians of the earliest civilizations were delivering surprisingly sophisticated, knowledgeable and effective health care 2,000 years before Christ.

In fact, citizens received treatment superior to what Americans got in George Washington's time, according to the researchers. The first president died in 1799 after doctors bled him in an effort to rectify the 'imbalance' of his bodily 'humors.'

Scurlock and Andersen describe their findings in a newly published scholarly tome titled 'Diagnoses in Assyrian and Babylonian Medicine.' At 900 pages and $150 a copy, it is not a likely bestseller.

But the book may well upend conventional wisdom about the history of medicine, which has always given a hallowed place to ancient Greek physicians and dismissed medicine in ancient Mesopotamia as primitive superstition.

Mesopotamian treatments evolved through hundreds of years of careful experimentation and observation, the authors say. Some are still in use, such as surgically draining the pus that sometimes develops between the lungs and chest wall of pneumonia patients. Their precise instructions to 'make an opening in the fourth rib (with) a flint knife' to insert a lead drainage tube pretty well match present-day procedures..."

Friday, October 28, 2005

'Star Trek' star George Takei comes out

'Star Trek' star George Takei comes out | News |

Actor George Takei, best known as Mr. Sulu on the classic TV series Star Trek , comes out of the closet in the new issue of Frontiers . Or rather, as he tells editor Alexander Cho, 'It's not really coming out, which suggests opening a door and stepping through. It's more like a long, long walk through what began as a narrow corridor that starts to widen.' In the interview, the 68-year-old actor also discusses his childhood in a Japanese-American internment camp, his 18-year relationship, his siblings' inability to accept his homosexuality, and the upcoming Los Angeles production of Equus in which he stars."

Spider V Spider

diesel sweeties: pixelated robot romance web comic Diesel Sweeties does Spider V Spider. Spider Jerusalem/Transmetropolitan and Spiderman...

"I am your God" indeed...

Here is a favorite Krishnamurti joke:

The devil and a friend were walking down the street, when they saw ahead of them a man stoop down and pick up something from the ground, look at it, and put it away in his pocket. The friend asked the devil, “What did that man pick up?” “He picked up a piece of the truth,” said the devil. “That is very bad business for you, then” said his friend. “Oh, not at all,” the devil replied, “I am going to help him organize it.”

How Mobile Phones Conquered Japan

How Mobile Phones Conquered Japan
By Xeni Jardin

Story location:,1284,68537,00.html

Blue-haired Harajuku high schoolers thumb-text distant pals on stickered keitai. Cell phones become cookie brokers, beaming snack requests to vending machines that zap back digital payment demands. Teen girls book illicit "compensation dates" with salarymen, sending snapshots to potential johns via camera-phones.

The popular myth of Japan as a surreal, warp-speed incubator for all things handheld and digital is nothing new.

But rarely do outsiders have an opportunity to venture beyond iconic anecdotes for a matter-of-fact understanding of how mobile technology shapes that country's culture -- and our own.

Personal, Portable, Pedestrian: Mobile Phones in Japanese Life is touted as the first English-language book to attempt just that, and it succeeds.

Co-edited by University of Southern California research scientist Mizuko Ito, Keio University lecturer Daisuke Okabe and Misa Matsuda of Tokyo's Chuo University, the book debunks popular assumptions about why mobile culture evolved as it did in Japan.

Through a series of real-world case studies, it examines the relationship between mobile technology and Japanese society. In doing so, it sheds light on the way handheld connectivity tends to reshape cultures worldwide.

The book begins by tracing the evolution of mobile media from its roots in the wireless telephones found on '50s-era merchant ships, through '90s pager culture to contemporary smartphones. Then it explores how those devices became a source of pervasive connectedness to friends, family, lovers and co-workers -- a completely different kind of connectivity from the "other-world" internet space experienced through personal computers.

The Japanese word for cell phone -- keitai, meaning "something you carry with you" -- provides a hint about its role within Japanese culture. Over time, mobile devices in Japan have come to be perceived not so much as bundles of technical features, or tools for replicating PC functions from the road, but personal accessories that help users sustain constant social links with others.

In one essay, Ichiyo Habuchi describes that always-on state of wireless closeness as a "telecocoon" -- "a zone of intimacy in which people maintain relationships with others who they have already encountered."

And contributor Kenichi Fujimoto refers to the devices themselves as "territory machines" capable of transforming any space -- a subway train seat, a grocery store aisle, a street corner -- into "(one's) own room and personal paradise."

Apart from the technology's role in sustaining familiar social structures, Personal, Portable, Pedestrian also examines how mobile devices facilitate new links, like that of the "intimate stranger."

Through controversial phone-dating websites or between text-message buddies, mobile media makes it possible for bonds to evolve between individuals who may never meet in real space, but who nonetheless share a vivid experience of disembodied closeness that follows them as they move through the world.

While traditional notions of cyberspace promise to unlock us from the limitations of offline relationships and geographic anchors, keitai space flows in and out of ordinary, everyday activities, nimbly integrating the virtual and physical realms.

The book reaches far back into Japanese history for the origins of that integration, pointing to the legend of Sontoku (Kinjiro) Ninomiya, a Johnny Appleseed-like national folk hero often represented in statues outside bookstores and schools.

Born into a poor family of farmers in the late 18th century, Ninomiya became an educator, entrepreneur and politician through dogged work and self-education. He is most often remembered reading as he walks, burdened with bundles of firewood gathered in daily chores.

The book points to this multitasker ancestor as a precursor of contemporary nagara ("while-doing-something-else") mobility, a concept now embodied in students who wander from home to class and back again, eternally gazing into a palm full of e-mails.

While Personal, Portable, Pedestrian is packed with an abundance of rich, empirically dense vignettes, what makes the book a refreshing read is the unremarkable, familiar tone with which it frames keitai culture in Japan.

As one college student is quoted as explaining to his professor, "A lifestyle with keitai is so natural that one without (it), or one from which (it) is taken away, sounds unreal."

And by understanding how a once-alien technology became such a natural extension of everyday life in Japan, we may yet understand what is in store for the rest of the world.


"The Devil Went
Down to Georgia"
for the First Time
in 25 Years.

- - - -

1. The Devil won that fiddling contest, right?

2. Because isn't that totally amazing fiddle feedback
thing the Devil plays (which sounds like Hendrix gone
bluegrass) a hundred times better than that
high-school-band piece-of-crap tune Johnny plays?

3. I mean, come on, right?

4. And since the Devil is so clearly better, why does
he lay the golden fiddle on the ground at Johnny's

5. What kind of one-sided bet was that anyway, your
eternal soul for a fiddle?

6. Shouldn't it have been something like Johnny's soul
or the eradication of Evil?

7. Or maybe a golden fiddle against some object Johnny
placed great value upon?

8. If the Devil went down to Georgia 'cause he was
looking for a soul to steal, why does he arrange what
appears to be an honest competition?

9. Was there actually some hidden theft or scam going
on here on the part of the Devil?

10. Then why not explain that, Mr. Daniels?

11. And who was judging that contest?

12. Was it an honor-system kind of thing?

13. With the Devil?

14. Honor system with the Devil. How did Johnny get
sucked into that one?

15. Does Johnny suffer from some—I'm trying to be
delicate here—cognitive disabilities?

16. Was there some sort of arbitration board in place
in the event that the outcome was not obvious?

17. If so, who served on this board?

18. It wasn't the demons, was it?

19. 'Cause even though they're the only characters in
the song, they're kind of biased since they're in the
Devil's band and they're demons, right?

20. So why—why—does the Devil take the dive and throw
the contest?!

21. I mean, the Devil can't be hurting for cash. How
much is it going to cost him to buy a new golden

22. I'm thinking maybe $18,000. Does that sound right
to you?

23. If you're Johnny, what do you even want with a
golden fiddle?

24. Doesn't the metallic surface of a golden fiddle
create an unpalatably tinny sound as opposed to the
nice resonant sound on a wooden instrument?

25. Does he think he's going to display it in his home
and tell people the story of how he beat the Devil?

26. Who's going to believe that?

27. Or does he try to sell the fiddle?

28. If so, how does he go about getting something like
that appraised?

29. Or does he just melt it all down for the gold?

30. That sounds awfully hard, don't you think?

31. And is Johnny haunted by the question of why the
Devil let him win like that?

32. Was there some catch in the contest that Johnny
wasn't aware of where the Devil really does get his
soul anyway and Johnny didn't notice it because he's
not all that smart?

33. And even if he didn't get Johnny's soul, what is
Johnny going to say to God in heaven when he has to
explain that he bet his soul, the essence of life,
God's one true gift, on a fiddle contest?

34. Johnny knows deep down that he's not really the
best that's ever been and that's the source of his
insecure boasting, right?

35. Was it really necessary or wise to invite the
Devil to come on back if he ever wants to try again?

36. 'Cause what does Johnny need, a second golden

37. Or maybe a golden viola the next time?

38. Why would the Devil need an invitation?

39. Are you implying, Mr. Daniels, that Johnny
actually wants to get hustled?

The reason you do anything is to change the way you feel.

What happened to that "up or down vote" garbage?

The Rude Pundit:
"You know what's gonna be fuckin' hilarious? When George Bush nominates some insane wad of fuck to the Supreme Court now that Harriet Miers has turned tail and run. 'Cause, see, the Democrats now have cover from any insanitoid right wingers or groups that fuckin' dare to say that a Bush nominee deserves an up-or-down vote. They have demonstrated just how full of shit they are. A fair hearing? A debate? Fuck no. Just give us who you want, or we're gonna rip out your jugular and dance and bathe in the spraying blood..."

People are scum » Quake Kids Sold To Sex Trade:
"Quake Kids Sold To Sex Trade
Filed under:

* researchmaterial

— warrenellis @ 5:11 pm

Six-year-old Aisha loves the orange blouse and jeans given to her by the kind woman who rescued her from the chaos of the Kashmir earthquake. She snuggles up to the woman, trying to forget the devastation of her village home and the deaths of her parents 16 days ago. What Aisha does not know is that the woman, Kausar, is a prostitute who has bought her from relatives for 50,000 rupees and plans to put her to work in the sex trade as soon as she reaches puberty.

Aisha is not alone. According to welfare agencies, many of the hundreds of girls and boys orphaned by the October 8 earthquake are being targeted by gangs intent on turning them into prostitutes or street beggars. Other children are being sold for adoption by their parents in acts prompted by the destruction of homes and livelihoods."

Those wacky Catholics - The St. Gabriel Possenti Society

The St. Gabriel Possenti Society:
"The St. Gabriel Possenti Society promotes the public recognition of St. Gabriel Possenti, including his Vatican designation as Patron Saint of Handgunners.

St. Gabriel Possenti was a Catholic seminarian whose marksmanship and proficiency with handguns single-handedly saved the village of Isola, Italy from a band of 20 terrorists in 1860."

Overheard in the Office: The Voice of the Cubicle - 3PM Smoke Break

Overheard in the Office: The Voice of the Cubicle - 3PM Smoke Break:
"3PM Smoke Break

Co-worker #1: We're like The A-Team.
Co-worker #2: I get to be BA Baracus since I'm the only black one.

1634 Broadway
New York, NY"

Thursday, October 27, 2005

THE DAYS OF CATHCART ZEN - The Politics Of Cathcart Zen - Warren Ellis

THE DAYS OF CATHCART ZEN - The Politics Of Cathcart Zen:
"...Because Nixon understood that political power was only ever about screwing the other guy before he found a way to screw you. Voting is about nothing but installing the guy who's more likely to screw the people you hate before they elect the guy who's more likely to screw you. The whole point of a two-party system is to polarise entire countries into behaving like football fans. Dulls the thinking. Crushes original thinking. Anti-evolution. Creates herd mentalities. Not me."

“My intellectual drive for understanding was cover for my spiritual development.”

Evolver: An Interview With Daniel Pinchbeck, Part 1 » Pop Occulture:
"...I am not sure I would say that I don’t believe anything. I think, like Jung, I feel comfortable saying I believe only what I know. At this point in time, most people are trapped in dualisms, paranoias, and sensationalism when it comes to considering the occult or esoteric aspects of reality. Either the “aliens” or “demons” or “angels” are literally real, or they are phantasmal aspects of our own mind. It is harder to accept the possibility that these phenomena are truly daimonic, truly in-between or outside the definitions we might like to create for them. In fact, they may even take a special pleasure in subverting our categories and upsetting our assumptions. It may be the case that we can only explore or discover what is happening on these other levels of being if we begin from a much subtler level of understanding.

...My personal hypothesis is that our consciousness is co-creating reality, therefore we want to be increasingly careful about the kind of thoughts we are allowing to absorb our awareness. If we spend too much time worrying about surveillance and Grey Alien predation and the HAARP Project, it is like we are attracting negative energy and negative vibrations towards us. We are substantiating that kind of material. I don’t mean that one should become polyannaish – one should stay grounded, but one should realize that one is better off practicing an inner ecology on the level of thought, or you will end up in a frothing state of apocalyptic terror, which is what much of our culture seems to be trying to induce.

...The fact is that the areas of mysticism, shamanism, the occult, etcetera, are available to intelligent questioning. It is not a question of “turning off your mind” to enter these areas. In fact, I found that it required the deepest level of intellectual engagement to clarify my own understanding of what is happening on these levels, and how you can integrate it with the modern, scientific view. For me, it is not a question of rejecting science for shamanism, but of integrating these approaches to reality.

I am thinking lately that the distinction between shamanism and sorcery is that sorcery utilizes language to control and dominate reality, to limit human potential... while shamanism provides the liberating act of breaking up certainties and returning reality to the status of mysterious perhapsness and infinite possibility.

...I see sorcery as more oriented towards personal power than fufilling a collective responsibility for a tribe or a community.

...I think we have to realize that the world is literally melting down right now – along with the great extinction crisis and accelerated climate change, we are in a period of vast cultural extinction, with half of the world’s 6,000 languages on the verge of disappearing. Let’s take stock of the urgency of the situation, and measure our actions according to reality rather than some nonexistent ideal of purity. I actually always feel incredibly comfortable whenever I am in the indigenous world – I feel like I understand their way of looking at reality, and have no conflict with their value system, intentions, or priorities. Frankly, I generally feel far more confused, nonplussed, and depressed sitting at a table of upper middle class white people, who will exert enormous amounts of energy talking about stupid gossip or idiotic vacations or dumb junk they have purchased, rather than examining things that are actually important – like the fact their opulent lifestyle and refusal to take responsibility for their thoughts and actions is condemning an entire planet to death.

I believe that the Santo Daime is a true prophetic vehicle, aiding in the return of the Christ consciousness to the Earth – not as an individual being, as Fundamentalists imagine, but as a compassionate and heart-centered level of consciousness, destined to put our world back together by teaching us how to put the greater good ahead of our individualistic and ego-centric aims. My hypothesis is that this second coming of Christ represents an aspect of the fulfillment of the prophecies and the Mayan Calendar, bringing a deeper level of heart and consciousness to the earth. I recommend you go down to the Amazon and try it for yourself, and then we will talk. While stating this, I am not claiming that the Daime is the “one true way” or anything of the sort. You could be a Buddhist and a Daimiesta, or many combinations of mystical paths, without violating any precept of the Daime.

My tip is that people have to learn to discriminate for themselves and take responsibility for their own minds. That is the key to life on earth. Also, you have to have experiences for yourself rather than accepting second-hand knowledge because it is more convenient or comforting.

...What is lacking in the “New Age” or “New Edge” spiritual culture is any sense of the significance of sacrifice, for which Christ’s life provides a model. Doing yoga, eating delicious raw food, hanging Tibetan prayer flags – that is all very nice, providing a great lifestyle, but it has little to do with pursuing a true spiritual path, in my opinion. The meaning of Christ’s life is missed by Christianity: He did not “save our souls” through the crucifixion. He provided a model for how we should act, if we would like to save our own souls. And that activity is one of conscious sacrifice – not stupidly throwing one’s self on a machine gun, but figuring out how to utilize your psychic energy and your particular position for the best possible outcome. The way to bring “Heaven down to Earth” is to match your actions with your intentions."

Kung Fu Monkey: DD3

Kung Fu Monkey: DD3:
..."“What’s girly about a Jeep?”

“The Jeep? Oh, nothing,’” he laughed. “Just that it’s such a pretty color is all.”

“You don’t like yellow?” I asked.

“Yellow’s a pretty color for a flower.”

I slowly began to turn the cheap plastic carousel of aluminum key chains by the cash register. “Yellow’s also the color of infection oozing from a man’s open skull after he’s been beaten and left for dead in the middle of the desert.” I smiled and shrugged my shoulders. “But hey, if yellow makes you think of pretty flowers, well, to each their own I guess.”"

The Official Graham Hancock Website: Supernatural

The Official Graham Hancock Website: Supernatural:
"...A most remarkable theory exists to explain the special characteristics of these amazing and haunting early works of art, and to explain why identical characteristics are also found in prehistoric art from many other parts of the world and in art produced by the shamans of surviving tribal cultures today. The theory was originally elaborated by Professor David Lewis-Williams, and is now supported by a majority of archaeologists and anthropologists. In brief, it proposes that the reason for the similarities linking all these different systems of art, produced by different, unrelated cultures at different and widely-separated periods of history, is that in every case the shaman-artists responsible for them had previously experienced altered states of consciousness in which they had seen vivid hallucinations, and in every case their endeavour in making the art was to memorialise on the walls of rock shelters and caves the ephemeral images that they had seen in their visions. According to this theory the different bodies of art have so many similarities because we all share the same neurology, and thus share many of the same experiences and visions in altered states of consciousness.

There are lots of ways of inducing the necessary altered state. The bushmen of South Africa get there through night-long rhythmic dancing and drumming, the Tukano Indians of the Amazon do it through consuming the hallucinogenic beverage Ayahuasca. In prehistoric Europe I present evidence that the requisite altered states may have been reached through the consumption of Psilocybe semilanceata – the popular little brown “magic mushroom” that is still used throughout the world to induce hallucinations today. In Central America the Maya and their prececessors used other psilocybe species (P.Mexicana and P. Cubensis) to induce the same effects.

...I began to part company with Lewis-Williams and his theory. Whatever the cave artists saw in their trances, and no matter how devoutly they may have believed that what they were seeing was real, the South African professor is adamant that the entire inspiration for 25,000 years of Upper Palaeolithic cave paintings reduces to nothing more than the fevered illusions of disturbed brain-chemistry – i.e. to hallucinations. In his scientific universe there is simply no room, or need, for the supernatural, no space for any kind of Otherworld, and no possibility that intelligent non-physical entities could exist.

I found I couldn’t leave the matter there, with the inspiration for cave art and the birth of religion neatly accounted for by disturbed brain-chemistry, with the earliest spiritual insights of mankind rendered down to mere epiphenomena of strictly biological processes, with the sublime thus efficiently reduced to the ridiculous. To have established the role of hallucinations as the inspiration for cave art is one thing – and David Lewis-Williams, in my opinion, has successfully done that. But to understand what hallucinations really are, and what part they play in the overall spectrum of human experience and behaviour, is another thing altogether, and neither Lewis-Williams nor any other scientist can yet claim to possess such knowledge, or to be anywhere near acquiring it. Gifted and experienced shamans the world over really do know more – much more – than they do. So if we were smart we would listen to what the shamans have to say about the true character and complexity of reality insteadof basking mindlessly in the overweening one-dimensional arrogance of the Western technological mindset...


Why did Nobel Prize-winner Francis Crick keep concealed until his death the amazing circumstances under which he first “saw” the double-helix structure of DNA? And why did he become convinced that natural laws are unable to explain the mysterious complexity of the DNA molecule itself?

Why does the 97 per cent of DNA that scientists do not understand – so-called “junk DNA” – contain chemical “sequences” arranged in patterns and frequencies that are otherwise only found in the deep coding of all human languages?

Why do Western lab volunteers, placed experimentally under the influence of hallucinogens such as DMT, psilocybin, mescaline and LSD, report visionary encounters with non-physical “beings” in the form of animal-human hybrids identical to those described by Amazonian shamans and to those painted by our ancestors in the prehistoric caves?

What is the significance of the astonishing similarities between the entities known as “aliens”, ET’s” or “greys” in modern popular culture, the entities known as “fairies”, “elves” and “goblins” in the Middle Ages, and the entities that shamans in surviving tribal cultures know as “ghosts”, “gods” and “spirits”? Why are such figures also depicted in prehistoric art as far afield as Africa, Europe, the Americas and Australia?

Such questions, I know, sound preposterous and pointless to anyone committed to “objective” science and the Western logical positivist tradition. The more closely I pursued them, however, the more convinced I became that they point towards matters of extraordinary substance, and that science has done us an immense disfavour by its policy of ridiculing and discouraging all rational inquiry in this area."

Alchemical Braindamage

Alchemical Braindamage:
"...The important thing to remember about all people is that no one ever wants to think of themselves as the bad guy. Everyone rationalizes themselves as the hero of their own story. So while you can imagine many of the dodgier elites in the world successfully telling themselves they're good christians who enjoy the blessings of the church, or maybe a noble benefactor of the global economy, and social progress ( these folks are more likely to be luciferians btw )when you stretch those activities to encompass mass murder, whole sale child kidnapping and abuse, and epic amounts of narcotics, the usual narrative probably comes up a bit short.

So how does someone like that successfully rationalize their existence?

...But at the end of the day, what it's really about is not having to look at yourself. Not having to see what you really are and what you really do to people. Because that would mean you would have to see what has been done to you. And really that's the key to it all.

...It's common knowledge that while not all abused children become abusers, pretty much all abusers were themselves abused. It's not instinctive to attack and brutalize other human beings. You have to have learned it from someone. This phenomenon is well understood in juvenile criminal services. The only difference between the hardcore juvenile offender who becomes the hardcore adult violent sexual offender, and the elite class predator, is the support network which conceals and enables the behavior.

Imagine an abused child filled with self loathing and rage, incapable of empathising with others, lacking any real impulse control, and then place that sadly all too common person in context of rich family, powerful contacts, influential friends, and vast wealth. Most common predators end up in custody because they have no money to purchase gratification, no support network to protect them, and no social reinforcement to think beyond the moment.

With the elite predator or sociopath, there's no reason why they would ever be identified as such, let alone incarcerated, and no reason why they wouldn't be able to have family and children, and no reason why they wouldn't imprint that behavior on those children, reproducing the cycle. This sort of thing happens even in lower class society. The only difference is the poor can't afford the trappings to justify, let alone glorify, this lifestyle, and the rich not only can, but seemingly do..."


The Southern Illinoisan:
"'I think it's pretty credible. I've talked to police officers in Alabama who found prints that matched those found by conservationists in Florida and game wardens in Illinois,' he said of a type of footprint that indicates a large side-attached big toe. 'Most people who put fake Bigfoot prints make it look like a giant human foot. All these people finding the same large footprint tells me there's something going on there that's beyond fakery.'

For those skeptical of cryptozoology, Coleman points to the many animal discoveries once rumored to be myth. Among these are mountain gorillas, the megamouth shark, the coelacanth (a six-foot-long, walking fish), and most recently, the ivory-billed woodpecker.

'In Brazil, they've found a new monkey every year during the last decade,' Coleman said. Once a discovery is made, traditional science takes over and cryptozoology moves on to the next mystery. Coleman believes about 80 percent of the reports he investigates are fraudulent or the result of human error or imagination." Theme: What if Fox News were around during other historical events? Theme: What if Fox News were around during other historical events?

Simple Definition of Chaos Magick? » Pop Occulture

Simple Definition of Chaos Magick? » Pop Occulture:
"...Grant Morrison’s idea of the hypersigil, which is sort of where you create a fiction which becomes sort of a model or magnetic center around which you can constellate a new reality."

This leapt out at me because I think everyone does this all the time without being conscious of it. When you think about it, a government or an economic system is just one big story that people organize their lives around. So is a corporation. So are religions.

To me the cool thing about thinking about magick is that raises this story-creation to the level of conscious awareness. If you can create a compelling enough narrative, maybe you can step into it.


So is that what chaos magickians are trying to do - carve out a new identity for themselves by crafting fictions, which they then model their lives after, thus manifesting their will into reality?


Chaos magick - results focused magick that effects change through will, frequently by deconstructing schools of magick and adopting those aspects useful or workable.

The Jeet Kune Do of magick - absorb what is useful, reject what is useless, add that which is specifically your own…

Chaos magick becomes not a style of magick but a delivery system… tactics, not dogma.

Future Hi: Ghosts in the Machine

Future Hi: Ghosts in the Machine:
"The latest Wired magazine (Nov. 2005) has a brief aside on 'evil technologies in J-Horror films' called 'The Wicked Web' that inadvertantly highlights the ongoing influence of Shinto animism in the collective imagination of modern Japanese culture. Though the article itself fails to acknowledge this undercurrent, the content is clearly illustrative of the Japanese fascination with the spirit world. Japan, it should be noted, has carried Shinto since it's early birth some 2500 years ago, juggling it easily alongside Buddhism and all of its variants. In the late 1800's Shinto became the state religion of Japan and continued as such to the end of WW2. It's deep influence continues to inform much of the cultural imagination.

...It's easy to suggest that these animistic tendencies are merely superstitious hold-overs from older times. Yet they reinforce the necessity to embrace and honor the material world - something that's sorely missing from the death-obsessed western cults of the ascended son. The industrial affliction of self-degradation and ecological suicide can in many ways be traced back to the debasement of the earthly kingdom and the relentless pursuit of afterlife so typical of the Judeo/Islamo/Christian triumvirate.

...The Japanese culture presents both a fascinating dichotomy and a possible ontological model for the western world. At once ultramodern and animistic, Japan has driven human technology perhaps further than any other culture while maintaining an abiding reverence for nature. The recognition of spirit and consciousness in all things transcends the shortsightedness and eschatological thinking of the West, offering a grounding balance to a frequently teetering society."

The Dilbert Blog: Bad Thoughts

The Dilbert Blog: Bad Thoughts:
"...After I did my looting – or as we white people like to say: “gather my supplies” – I’d motor my little pirate boat down the main street, out to the ocean, and back to my hidden lair that’s stinking of damp merchandise.

Sometime soon I plan to do some thinking about ending world hunger. But frankly, that seems harder."

There's a really bad joke here somewhere...

The Globe and Mail: Education, weight seen to affect women's sex life:
"Women who are educated, married or heavy are more likely to have low sex drives, according to a landmark Canadian study that explored links between sexual problems and social and personal factors."

Ref Stoppage; Sak v Shammy

Nippon Joho: Looking in the Cross Hairs:
"There are a lot of mixed feelings out there regarding the Ken Shamrock-Kazushi Sakuraba match.

...My first impression watching the show live was that the fight was stopped too early. Out of nowhere, Shamrock got rocked by a Sakuraba left punch, went down and as soon as Saku followed, the referee* jumped in to stop the fight. Seconds later we witnessed Shamrock jumping to both feet like nothing happened, visibly upset about the outcome.

Now I’m not an expert, nor do I want to provide the final answer about this match, but after watching the fight again and again there are some pieces of evidence I want to throw out there in case someone with more time can put this piece together.

Sakuraba landed a good, clean left to Shamrock’s face. This stumbled Shamrock back a little bit and, I guess due to the impact of the punch, Shamrock wasn’t able to regain his footing and as he fell he turned his back.

Here comes, in my opinion, the most important point on this fight: at the moment Shamrock fell he turned his back and as he did this his right arm landed over the ropes. Sakuraba rushed in with a couple of punches and the referee jumped in to end it.

I’m not the biggest fan of PRIDE referees, but this is a very difficult decision to make in just split seconds. From the referee’s point of view he most likely saw Shamrock fall and turn his back. At the moment Sakuraba rushed, Shamrock didn’t move or try to intelligently defend himself from the attack."

Wednesday, October 26, 2005


So say the teacher you're working with asks you to come up with an activity to fill up the class time for a lesson later in the week.

You spend the day coming up with the idea, gathering the materials, writing, cutting, pasting, rubber-band'izing [it's a word - pipe down you rabble] and generally making it happen.

The next day the teacher says "You know, I forgot that next week is a big, important test so instead we'll spend that class period on a review sheet."

This might cause a lesser man to feel frustrated. Even daydream about such things as smacking said teacher around a little bit.

I, on the other hand, am a Zen master.

My mind is a still pool of clear water. Unperturbed by the ebbs and flows of life. Rolling with the punches. Being water. Relaxed into life.

Also, I've started drinking at work.*

So that helps.


*Just kidding.

[As far as you know, anyways...]


What you say about anything probably says more about you than the thing spoken about.


The insistence that all things be rational, logical or consistent derives from an emotional need.

Derren Brown - Subtle skills - Powers of suggestion

Derren Brown - Subtle skills - Powers of suggestion:
"Conditioned response
Commonly referred to as 'thinking inside the box', this form of mind control underpins most of the others. Psychologists, hypnotists and mentalists base their work on the theory that we are conditioned by society to think and act in certain ways. 'We learn suggestibility from an early age,' says Derren. 'We have to learn that if we touch a flame, it will burn. We pick up this kind of thing subconsciously so that next time we know not to touch.'

This theory is the basis of the work of authors Laurie Nadel, Judy Haims and Robert Stempson who, in their book The Sixth Sense, explore the relationship between intuition and logic. 'From earliest childhood we are praised and rewarded for performing mental feats involving logic, memory and other measurable cognitive skills,' they say. 'The entire foundation of our traditional education system is predicated on the belief that these skills are superior to other mental abilities such as imagination and intuition. Thus you learn early on in life to programme your mind to use only a limited part of its ability in performing tasks.'

Trained to obey
This issue of authority is central to why most of us are inclined to think 'inside the box'. As Derren points out, 'It's important to learn how to make patterns and generalise but through it we also learn unquestioning suggestibility and authority. This leads us to accept what societal figureheads such as parents, teachers, tutors and doctors say – and even find ourselves offering their opinions as our own.' It was on this basis, then, that Derren was able to condition the shoppers in the Whitgift Centre to act outside their own free will. 'I used the tannoy as a subtle form of authority,' says Derren. 'As people are not really paying much attention to it, their subconscious takes over.'

Authority and imagination
Does 'thinking inside the box' seem to you a perfectly viable go-with-the-flow option? Or does it bring on the horrifying realisation that you need to get out more? Whatever your reaction to it, don't switch your TV set off yet. According to Derren, we should really be hoping for a mixture of both. 'Ingrained patterns are something we all need to learn for our own safety and development,' says Derren, 'but they can be limiting so sometimes we need to think outside the box. That way we can learn to be more creative and challenge our limitations.'"

Derren Brown - Reading minds - Inside their heads

I've only tried mirroring once. It did seem to increase rapport, but it also felt manipulative. But the increased feeling of rapport could have also been the result of a myriad of other factors and circumstances...

Derren Brown - Reading minds - Inside their heads:
"The basis of all persuasive technique and mind control effects is rapport. This concept has been blown out of all proportion by gurus in the therapy and management training fields, but a basic understanding of what it means is worth having.

Having rapport with somebody means that the two of you are enjoying easy company with each other, and usually implies that you are acting and talking in similar ways. I'm sure you've had the experience of getting on with somebody very quickly and soon finding that you both seem to know where the other is coming from. By contrast, we've all endured trying to hold a conversation with someone who just doesn't seem to click with anything we have to say.

Since the 1970s, rapport has been studied and turned into a high-powered 'skill' that supposedly can be learned and then turned on when a person wishes to gain persuasive influence over somebody. The theory works like this: people in rapport with each other tend to mirror each other's body language, use similar speech patterns and even breathe and blink at the same rate – the outward signs of a comfortable and free-flowing interaction.

Certainly this is true – if you shift position during a conversation with a friend, you'll find that he or she will soon follow to keep that unconscious rapport going. Similarly, you may be aware that you talk or act a little differently with one group of people than you do with another. You do this to allow what you have in common with each group to flourish and so ensure that your rapport with them is maintained.

However, the gurus in this field then say that, by consciously showing the outward signs of rapport – that is, by deliberately mirroring someone's body language and feeding back their vocabulary, ideas and breathing rate – you will automatically create rapport and really put the other person at ease. Despite its twisted logic, this sounds plausible – but, in practice, you are likely to appear less an easy conversational partner and more a person with a mental illness!

There's a good reason for this. When those outward signs normally occur, they are the signals that something unconscious and natural is occurring. Faking them just doesn't feel right to the other party and can be quite alienating.

You don't need to take a training course in communication skills to be able to put someone at their ease. When a person meets you for the first time, they will be open to any signals you give them about who you are and how the two of you are going to relate – much as I tried to put you at your ease at the beginning of the video clip.

If you have already decided – perhaps unconsciously – that the person you are about to meet isn't going to like you, the chances are that you will give off signals that show an uneasy rapport and a presumption of dislike between you. Therefore you tend to get what you expect.

If, on the other hand, you walk into a situation having decided that you are immensely likeable and worth knowing (even if you have to fake it ...), you'll find, all other things being equal, that you get a better response. And then as more people respond well to you, you start to change your own opinions about yourself.

So, when approaching new acquaintances with whom you wish to establish rapport, decide beforehand that you are going to be very interested in them and what they have to say, and that you want them to feel comfortable and good. And don't fake it and don't overdo it! Smiling too much and touching a near-stranger's elbow all the time will make you seem like a moron, not a potential friend. People respond to natural, easy-going, confident behaviour.

And remember: if you do have to fake it and then fake it quite well, you are actually being that confident person in that situation. It's just behaviour!

I develop that rapport by learning to see the situation from the perspective of the other person, not my own. Consider what happens in a normal conversation. Someone sits and talks about themselves, while you pick up on a few things that relate to you. You wait for then to finish so that you can say, 'Yes, I ...' and then start talking about yourself. They then respond by returning to their own stories and opinions, and so the dialogue continues. In other words, you are listening to someone to see how the conversation relates to you.

Now consider the alternative: you listen to whatever they have to say to learn how the content of their conversation relates to them. You build in your mind a representation of their way of seeing the world, and you piece together their patterns. People love talking about themselves, so you can happily ask any questions to complete those patterns and gain more information about their world. After a while, this will become almost second nature to you, and you will be able simply to look at someone and tell almost immediately what their reactions to various stimuli might be.

Mind control?
Once you understand someone else's perception of a situation, you can mentally exist inside their heads. If they want you to sort out a problem for them, you can do so more effectively, for you are not letting your own prejudices and ideas get in the way.

It is from this starting point that I can begin to play with the mind control for which I am known. It's not that I am really controlling other people. Rather, I am seeing events through their eyes and second-guessing their responses and thoughts. It's great fun."

Derren Brown - Messiah

Derren Brown - Messiah:
"The controversial, award-winning psychological illusionist Derren Brown returns to Channel 4 with a brand new one-off special. In a departure from the formats of Russian Roulette and The Séance, this documentary-styled one-hour film sees Derren in America attempting to raise questions about the validity of certain religious and spiritual belief systems; belief systems that people are encouraged to base their lives upon - such as new-age faiths and mainstream Christianity. Can he get certain authority figures to endorse him as the real thing?...

Q: How would you describe the programme?
Derren Brown: It's a personal journey for me, quite a dark journey. It's a documentary styled show where I go to America and meet some influential people behind certain belief-systems that people are encouraged to base their lives upon. Two targets are new-age beliefs and mainstream Christianity. Using my techniques and showmanship can I get these people who are responsible for the beliefs of hundreds of thousands of people, to endorse me as being the real thing?...

Q: You used to be a Christian. How does that conflict or not conflict with what you do in the show?
DB: Around the same time of me coming out of Christianity I had already started performing. I slowly realized that true belief of any kind - Christians, new-agers, committed cynics - all fall prey to a similar circular, self-fulfilling logic. I saw that although my faith was culturally endorsed, it didn't stand up to any more scrutiny than the wackiest new-age belief.

In the end what it boils down to is if things make us feel good then we believe in them; we take them on board. There's nothing wrong with that. That's kind of what we do as human beings. We're very suggestible around authority figures and if an authority figure tells us things then we tend to believe them and a month later we're coming out with those same opinions as if they were our own. It's absolutely part of what makes us human but equally part of what makes us human is the ability to recognize that as a pattern and question it; and that's what I hope underpins the programme. There will be people out there, who like me, are already very skeptical of the belief systems I question. But I'd be delighted if the show nudged some people into a more questioning frame of mind, if they don't arrive at the same conclusions as me."

Derren Brown - Someone's lying - How's it done?

Derren Brown - Someone's lying - How's it done?:
"Classic signs of lying include bringing the hand up to the face – for example, to stroke the chin or touching the nose. The speaker makes these movements almost as if he wants to 'hide' the words coming out of his mouth.

You should also look out for eye movements. Generally, if people are thinking of visual information to answer a question, their eyes will move up: this is how they retrieve mental pictures. They do this unconsciously, but they will also tend to do it reliably. Once you know that, you can look for the instance when they don't look up in the same way, or when they look up but perhaps to the other side, or when they maintain eye contact with you when they would normally do otherwise.

This last is an interesting point. Most people imagine that we maintain eye contact when we tell the truth and break it when we lie. Not so. The majority of people will maintain eye contact when lying, because they don't need to retrieve information from their minds and, therefore, don't need to move their eyes. At another level, they are eager to appear sincere, and so consciously decide to keep looking at you.

But the point is not that such-and-such behaviour means a lie. The secret is to watch people closely and, keeping your wits about you, follow their mental processes in your own mind. Look for their patterns and see where they fall down. Watch for an answer that breaks the rules – the odd one out will be the lie."

Derren Brown - Trick of the mind - The abandoned wallet

Derren Brown - Trick of the mind - The abandoned wallet:
"Most people can be wrongfooted if you behave in a way that's unexpected. Once I was walking along a street when a man said threateningly: 'What are you looking at?' I answered a completely different question, saying: 'The wall outside my house is not 4ft high.' He looked dumbfounded and repeated his question. I again gave a completely irrelevant answer, saying: 'I used to live in Spain.' He was so perplexed by my failure to respond in the way he'd anticipated that he gave up and ran off."

Derren Brown - Trick of the mind - Are you feeling sleepy?

Derren Brown - Trick of the mind - Are you feeling sleepy?:
"If we feel that our brains are being overloaded with information, we panic and start to become confused. In this situation, if we're given a simple instruction, we grasp it like a lifeline. This technique is used in tricks to persuade people to behave in ways that are completely out of character. When commands are issued at the end of a stream of confusing instructions, people are so relieved they can finally understand what's being said that they will do whatever they're told.

...Public speakers often capitalise on the same response. Have you ever listened to a politician giving rapid-fire statistics so fast that the audience can't possibly take them in, only to end the speech with a simple, memorable phrase? The soundbite comes as such a relief after all those facts and figures that this is all the listeners remember."

God save the heretic - Sunday Times - Times Online

God save the heretic - Sunday Times - Times Online:
"...Judaism tells us in its most sacred text, the Torah, that a donkey once turned round and started an argument with its master (Numbers, chapter 22); and that the supreme creator took time out to instruct his chosen people not to carry dead badgers, pelicans, hoopoes or bats (Leviticus, chapter 11).

Christianity, while accepting these texts as sacred, further believes that God manifested himself on earth in the form of an excitable and frequently ill-tempered 1st-century Jewish rabbi called Joshua (“Jesus” in Greek) who disowned his family and believed that the world was soon going to end. How do we know Jesus was Jewish? Because he lived at home until he was 30 and his mother thought he was God.

Then there is Islam. Its followers believe that its sacred text, the Koran, is the word of Allah as dictated to his prophet Muhammad. Non-Muslims might regard Muhammad as a deluded and bellicose man who had far too many wives than was good for him. His private life as recorded in the Koran itself, for instance sura 66, is also rather surprising.

Buddhism is an increasingly popular choice for westerners these days with its distinctive mix of cowardice, escapism and self-absorption. Hinduism has always been the colourful and vibrant national religion of India, although under the guidance of that wicked imperialist power, the British raj, it did at last begin to accept that burning women alive on their husbands’ funeral pyres might not be such a good idea.

Shintoism, the national religion of Japan, venerated the emperor as a living god, at least until 1946 when Hirohito, under gentle pressure from the US army, admitted on the radio that he wasn’t really....

This confirms one’s sense that whatever the truth about God, all religions without exception are fallible human creations, in parts beautiful and profound and in parts ridiculous and repellent. To protect them from criticism is bad for our society and, even more importantly, bad for our souls..."

Certainly... accurate assessment of why I blog.

Though shouting does have its benefits. - DNRC:
"People who are trying to decide whether to create a blog or not go through a thought process much like this:

1. The world sure needs more of ME.
2. Maybe I'll shout more often so that people nearby can experience the joy of knowing my thoughts.
3. No, wait, shouting looks too crazy.
4. I know - I'll write down my daily thoughts and badger people to read them.
5. If only there was a description for this process that doesn't involve the words egomaniac or unnecessary.
6. What? It's called a blog? I'm there!

The blogger's philosophy goes something like this:

Everything that I think about is more fascinating than the crap in your head."

Harper's Magazine: We Now Live in a Fascist State

Harper's Magazine: We Now Live in a Fascist State:
"...The theories were popular in Europe in the 1930s (cheering crowds, rousing band music, splendid military uniforms), and in the United States they numbered among their admirers a good many important people who believed that a somewhat modified form of fascism (power vested in the banks and business corporations instead of with the army) would lead the country out of the wilderness of the Great Depression...

Eco, in search of their common ground, doesn't look for a unifying principle or a standard text. He attempts to describe a way of thinking and a habit of mind, and on sifting through the assortment of fantastic and often contradictory notions -- Nazi paganism, Franco's National Catholicism, Mussolini's corporatism, etc. -- he finds a set of axioms on which all the fascisms agree. Among the most notable:

The truth is revealed once and only once.

Parliamentary democracy is by definition rotten because it doesn't represent the voice of the people, which is that of the sublime leader.

Doctrine outpoints reason, and science is always suspect.

Critical thought is the province of degenerate intellectuals, who betray the culture and subvert traditional values.

The national identity is provided by the nation's enemies.

Argument is tantamount to treason.

Perpetually at war, the state must govern with the instruments of fear. Citizens do not act; they play the supporting role of "the people" in the grand opera that is the state.

Eco published his essay ten years ago, when it wasn't as easy as it has since become to see the hallmarks of fascist sentiment in the character of an American government.

... It does no good to ask the weakling's pointless question, "Is America a fascist state?" We must ask instead, in a major rather than a minor key, "Can we make America the best damned fascist state the world has ever seen," an authoritarian paradise deserving the admiration of the international capital markets, worthy of "a decent respect to the opinions of mankind"? I wish to be the first to say we can. We're Americans; we have the money and the know-how to succeed where Hitler failed, and history has favored us with advantages not given to the early pioneers.

We don't have to burn any books.

The Nazis in the 1930s were forced to waste precious time and money on the inoculation of the German citizenry, too well-educated for its own good, against the infections of impermissible thought. We can count it as a blessing that we don't bear the burden of an educated citizenry. The systematic destruction of the public-school and library systems over the last thirty years, a program wisely carried out under administrations both Republican and Democratic, protects the market for the sale and distribution of the government's propaganda posters...

We don't have to disturb, terrorize, or plunder the bourgeoisie.

In Communist Russia as well as in Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany, the codes of social hygiene occasionally put the regime to the trouble of smashing department-store windows, beating bank managers to death, inviting opinionated merchants on complimentary tours (all expenses paid, breathtaking scenery) of Siberia. The resorts to violence served as study guides for free, thinking businessmen reluctant to give up on the democratic notion that the individual citizen is entitled to an owner's interest in his or her own mind.

The difficulty doesn't arise among people accustomed to regarding themselves as functions of a corporation. Thanks to the diligence of out news media and the structure of our tax laws, our affluent and suburban classes have taken to heart the lesson taught to the aspiring serial killers rising through the ranks at West Point and the Harvard Business School -- think what you're told to think, and not only do you get to keep the house in Florida or command of the Pentagon press office but on some sunny prize day not far over the horizon, the compensation committee will hand you a check for $40 million, or President George W. Bush will bestow on you the favor of a nickname...

Who doesn't now know that the corporation is immortal, that it is the corporation that grants the privilege of an identity, confers meaning on one's life, gives the pension, a decent credit rating, and the priority standing in the community? Of course the corporation reserves the right to open one's email, test one's blood, listen to the phone calls, examine one's urine, hold the patent on the copyright to any idea generated on its premises. Why ever should it not? As surely as the loyal fascist knew that it was his duty to serve the state, the true American knows that it is his duty to protect the brand.

...We don't have to gag the press or seize the radio stations.

People trained to the corporate style of thought and movement have no further use for free speech, which is corrupting, overly emotional, reckless, and ill-informed, not calibrated to the time available for television talk or to the performance standards of a Super Bowl halftime show. It is to our advantage that free speech doesn't meet the criteria of the free market.

...An impressive beginning, in line with what the world has come to expect from the innovative Americans, but we can do better. The early twentieth-century fascisms didn't enter their golden age until the proletariat in the countries that gave them birth had been reduced to abject poverty. The music and the marching songs rose with the cry of eagles from the wreckage of the domestic economy. On the evidence of the wonderful work currently being done by the Bush Administration with respect to the trade deficit and the national debt -- to say nothing of expanding the markets for global terrorism -- I think we can look forward with confidence to character-building bankruptcies, picturesque bread riots, thrilling cavalcades of splendidly costumed motorcycle police."


"Open up this week’s Entertainment Weekly, page past the articles on Charlize Theron and Robert Downey Jr, and you’ll come across one of the biggest, meatiest articles on a specific comic work to grace a mainstream publication in months, if not years.

“Watchmen: An Oral History” by EW Senior Writer Jeff Jensen takes a look back at the landmark comics work, while serves as an introduction and “why you should care” guide to EW readers who’ve never heard of it.

“Entertainment Weekly often does oral histories on pop culture classics, exploring their origins, impact and legacy,” Jensen said when asked of the origins of the piece. “Watchmen is a pop culture classic, one with a creative legacy that extends into mainstream pop culture and is being felt today, and we wanted to acknowledge that...”"

Free recipe ebook, Autumn Omakase - Autumn Omakase, Tatsu Nishino, Nishino:
"Autumn Omakase, A Tasting Menu from Tatsu Nishino of Nishino

...Our second book, also published electronically, is Autumn Omakase. A tasting menu from Tatsu Nishino of Nishino. Targeting the flavors and ingredients of fall, this gorgeous book is comprised of nine recipes, 124 pages, and 399 beautiful photos. The journey is as enjoyable as the destination with Autumn Omakase. The book also gives Tatsu Nishino's background as well as the back story behind the making of the book. And of course, you can download Autumn Omakase right now for free..."

Ten ways to make a sushi chef lose it -Jr, please note #3

Davezilla | Clean humor, filthy comments » Ten ways to make a sushi chef lose it:
"Ten ways to make a sushi chef lose it
Filed under


1. “Hold the onions and slap some gravy on the fries willya?”
2. Send back every piece of Nigiri and yell, “Don’t you people know what medium-well means?”
3. Ask for ketchup.
4. “I’ve don’t know what’s in sushi, but it sure is good! Just glad there’s no seafood in it cause I’m deathly allergic to fish.”
5. Tell the chef his sushi was, “Not as good as the refrigerated sushi at Costco.”
6. “Waaassssssaaaaaaaabbbbiiiiiiii!”
7. “What is this shit? It looks like raw fish and rice.”
8. “My goldfish died today. Can we eat him?”
9. “I’ll take a breast and thigh meal.”
10. “Are the Godzilla rolls really made from Godzilla?”"

Choosing the Perfect Gift - Lifehacker

Choosing the Perfect Gift - Lifehacker:
"...Don’t be afraid to ask what he or she wants. “A good surprise lasts five seconds. A good gift will be remembered forever....”"

It's funny because it's true! [See, because Rush Limbaugh is a bombastic, hypocritical addict. In case that wasn't obvious.]

Daily Kos: Cheers and Jeers: Tuesday:
"[Al Franken] ...Moral values: From what I understand, if you cut out all the passages in the Bible where Jesus talks about the poor, about helping out the least among us, you'd have the perfect container to smuggle Rush Limbaugh's drugs in..."

It's true.

I'm not nearly as clever as I think I am.

The Dilbert Blog:
"The only reason I dare writing this blog is because I have absolutely no sense of embarrassment. Most people would be horrified at the prospect of proving their ignorance to thousands of readers... just enjoy the blog as if it were an e-mail from your friend who thinks he’s clever but isn’t as clever as he thinks."

See Kev, you aspire to be a redneck, this is how you'll end up. Fair Warning. - DNRC:
"My Kentuckian sister-in-law's young daughter recently married a Mexican immigrant. They promptly had their first child. Sometime after the birth, a doctor walked into the recovering mom's hospital room and mentioned that the baby's white blood cell count was high. My sister-in-law asked, 'Does that mean she will be more white than Mexican?' This is a true story."

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

"I prefer to feel that everything can be expanded to Magick."

"Magick & Science - Two Ways of Looking

Here's a great thread on Barbelith trying to explain the value of magickal thinking to a rationalist. Some people like to think that everything can be reducible to science. I prefer to feel that everything can be expanded to Magick."



New haircut.

For Sandy

Vincent Cheung's Blog:
"How to wake up and feel better.

...I use a very simple system that can be done by even the most frugal of people. I can't remember when I first started doing this, but it's been at least 7 years. Here's what you do:

* Set an alarm to go off before you want to wake up.

* Make the alarm really quiet radio or music.

* Set a second alarm to go off at the latest time you want to wake up.

* Make the alarm the usual loudness.

The whole point is that the first alarm should be so quiet that it will only wake you up if you're in "light" sleep. Waking up in "light" sleep should leave you feeling more refreshed than waking up in "deep" sleep. The second alarm is the back up to make sure that you wake up in time :)..."

The Catholic Church, leading the charge into the 14th century...

Boing Boing: Principal says students can't keep blogs or MySpace profiles:
"Principal says students can't keep blogs or MySpace profiles
A blog isn't just fun, says a Catholic school principal in New Jersey --

It's an open invitation to predators and an activity that Pope John XIII Regional High School in Sparta will no longer tolerate, the Rev. Kieran McHugh told a packed assembly of 900 high school students two weeks ago.

(Because if there's one thing Catholic Church officials know about first-hand, it's the behavior patterns of sexual predators.)

Effective immediately, and over student complaints, the teens were told to dismantle their accounts or similar sites with personal profiles and blogs. Defy the order and face suspension, students were told. While public and private schools routinely block access to noneducational Web sites on school computers, Pope John's order reaches into students' homes..."

ACLU Reports 21 Homicides in U.S. Custody - Yahoo! News

ACLU Reports 21 Homicides in U.S. Custody - Yahoo! News:
"At least 21 detainees who died while being held in U.S. custody in Iraq and Afghanistan were killed, many during or after interrogations, according to an analysis of Defense Department data by the American Civil Liberties Union.

The analysis, released Monday, looked at 44 deaths described in records obtained by the ACLU. Of those, the group characterized 21 as homicides, and said at least eight resulted from abusive techniques by military or intelligence officers, such as strangulation or "blunt force injuries," as noted in the autopsy reports.

The 44 deaths represent a partial group of the total number of prisoners who have died in U.S. custody overseas; more than 100 have died of natural and violent causes.

In one case, the report said, a detainee died after being smothered during interrogation by military intelligence officers in November 2003. In another case cited by the report, a prisoner died of asphyxiation and blunt force injuries after he was left standing, shackled to the top of a door frame, with a gag in his mouth..."


Followup/Distraction (
"I don't want more information, more feeds, more sources. When I write, when I think, the Internet is just too much for me to fathom. It's a wonderful tool for research, a good way to kill a few hours...

I figure there are two different kinds of distractions: the wide kind and the narrow kind. The Internet is the widest possible distraction because it lets you wander so far afield that getting work done if you are, like me, the distractable sort of person--getting work done is almost impossible. I'm not the sort of person who can read a book with footnotes and ignore the footnotes. I have to read every footnote. I often prefer the footnotes because they point in so many directions. But when wide distractions are available I avoid the narrow distractions, and those are the useful distractions. Let's say you're thinking hard about a concept--say, kittens. Kittens are young cats. They have paws and they are sometimes friendly. Your stepmother, you remember, didn't let you have a kitten. Why was that? Was she allergic, or did she really just hate you? Now, that's something worth thinking about. A concept worth exploring. That's a narrow distraction, a good distraction.

But with a wide distraction you think about kittens and all of a sudden your email pops up and you're thinking about Viagra, and about how horrible the world is and how it's filled with rapacious greedy spammers. You're not able to think about kittens any more so you check out the news to find out that China has a manned space program. Click. And that peak oil is a real problem and we might be living in an age where electricity becomes prohibitively expensive. Click. And that Apple just released a new iPod again, and everyone is all aflutter. There's really no way to bring all of that back to kittens. You've been broadly distracted. You might as well play some solitaire and go to bed.

Distraction is necessary. Minds need to wander to get anything done. But the Internet is sort of the mental equivalent of the snack aisle at a convenience store, filled with satisfying fatty chips and tasty cream-filled cakes. God knows I've spent enough time with both the Internet and cream-filled cakes to see the similarities."

Guest post: More on distractions, from Paul Ford | 43 Folders:
"Because sometimes a broad distraction–like, say, getting drunk and watching the movie Red Dawn–is exactly what you need.

....My mind can’t wander, because, with anything that interests me, I can look it up on Wikipedia to gain some context. Before I know it I’ve got thirty tabs open at once in Firefox. Then new email comes in.

...I’m very paranoid about any metric of productivity. One person’s wasted time is another person’s productivity. For most of my life people saw me doing the things I liked to do and said, “you have too much free time on your hands.” I’ve decided that when you hear that, it means you’re doing something right."

Kung Fu Monkey: Daily Dingo


Kung Fu Monkey: Daily Dingo:
"...She just smiled as she placed three items on the bed between my legs, one by one:

1) a saddle

2) a melon baller

3) and a fucking ferret...."

Hunter S Thompson's widow on a lonely legacy

Guardian Unlimited Books: Hunter S Thompson's widow on a lonely legacy:
"His motto was: it's wrong when it stops being fun."

Overheard in the Office

Site cracks me up...

Overheard in the Office: The Voice of the Cubicle :
"12PM Sensitivity Retraining

Co-worker #1: How was the event today?
Co-worker #2: Oh, it was good. The audience was mostly colored, but there were a few white people.
Co-worker #1: ...

444 Park Avenue
New York, NY

1PM Lunch

Tech: I am a guacamole of knowledge into which you may dip the nacho of need.

105 Madison Avenue
New York, NY

2PM Send Off Tuition Check

Admissions clerk: Can I help you?
Student: I didn't get credit for a class I took this summer.
Admissions clerk: Did you go to class?
Student: Sometimes.
Admissions clerk: Did you pay for the class or do you have a student loan?
Student: No.

120 White Bridge Road
Nashville, Tennessee
Overheard by: Susan Fanning"


No Touch Monkey!:
"There is no way Bush started drinking again.

To start drinking 'again' would require that he stopped drinking at some point...."
The Poor Man Institute » Would it be irresponsible to speculate about Bush’s relapse into alcoholism?:
"Would it be irresponsible to speculate about Bush’s relapse into alcoholism?
Posted by The Editors under Uncategorized

Faced with the biggest crisis of his political life, President Bush has hit the bottle again, The National Enquirer can reveal.

A few things:

1. The National Enquirer. Yeah, I know they get stuff right sometimes, and they’ve beaten libel suits and all that, but still: The National Enquirer. Noted.

2. On the other hand, the guy falls down alot. I don’t know what a normal amount of falling down is, an I imagine that some people have lifestyles that involve a higher risk of falling down than mine, and so that needs to be taken into account. That said, he fell off a Segway. That’s like … I don’t know what that’s like, like water flowing uphill or something. I’m not sure how you would go about doing that, falling off a state-of-the-art self-balancing transport, but I think there are instructions inside bottles of cheap Scotch.

...4. But it’s not just the falling down. The guy’s just weird sometimes - I’m not just talking about all the weird shit he says, or the way he’s always smiling like he just made some great joke after saying something utterly devoid of humor, or any of the other stuff. He’s just a weird duck. Maybe it’s just that you only ever see him in very artificial circumstances, but there’s just this sense I get that he’s not really there. Like if you were to open up his head and look inside you’d see these circus bears riding unicycles around and around in there. And sometimes he’ll give one of his ’significant’ glances, and I swear to God I can hear the theme to “The Twilight Zone”. I’m not really explaining myself well, I know, and I hesitate to even bring it up, but I’ve never liked him, never wanted to “have a beer” with him, and have always just felt on a gut level like something’s not quite where it’s supposed to be. I’m definitely not explaining myself. Try this: remember Clinton, how he always seemed completely unselfconscious and comfortable in his own skin? Like that, time minus fifty. Throw in some drinkies and a few blinding hangovers, though, and it starts making more sense to me.

5. But here’s the thing. Let’s say he is drinking. Let’s say he is. Bush is a self-diagnosed alcoholic. Bush is a self-diagnosed alcoholic who woke up one day and cured himself (assist: Jesus). That is the story, yes? I’m not missing anything? Now, I don’t doubt that there is a legitimate medical diagnosis of alcoholism, and I’m not trying to make light of it in any way, but the lay definition of “alcoholic” is pretty close to the Dylan Thomas definition: “anyone who drinks more than me...”

Monday, October 24, 2005

Indoc 101

Salivate, Citizen by Mike Rogers:
"...Hate to break this to you, but you are brainwashed; or, at the very least, have been subjected to brainwashing all your life. It’s unfortunate, and you can deny it all you want, but you have. So have your parents, your grand-parents, and their parents, and their parents before that. So have your wife and your children. So will your children’s children and their children too. Your entire family and everyone you know have been subjected to brainwashing; some have been consumed by it; some will never get over it. It is most unfortunate that there’s not a thing you can do or say that will make things any different. The people who will get the most angry and defensive about this; the people who will argue with this the most incessantly are the most brainwashed of all.

From the day a child gets old enough to understand, the brainwashing commences... And it doesn’t matter when or whether that child was born and raised in the Soviet Union, China, Japan, Nazi Germany, or the United States; if the home and area they are raised in has any sort of government or even one iota of jingoism or patriotism, you can bet that that child will grow up with a biased view on the world. You can be sure that the brainwashing has distorted that child’s thinking. You can also be sure that the child probably will grow up with an unwavering belief that his country is the best – and will get angry or defensive if challenged about it...

It is most unfortunate that many Americans, for the most part, will get all riled up and huffy about what I have written here but, from what I’ve seen, Americans are probably the most brainwashed basketcases in the world today. It’s really a shame that a people who believe that they are the number one and the world’s only superpower, are in fact probably the most brainwashed people on the face of the earth today.

...Why do Americans care when two of their soldiers are killed in a foreign country – in a foreign country? But when tens of thousands of innocents – in their own homes – in their own country – are bombed and murdered by us, it is not even reported in American news? Why do the brainwashed cry when one or two soldiers are killed fighting in a country – a country that they had no business being in the first place – but don’t care for the innocent children murdered by those soldiers at the same time? Why do people care about someone whose only relationship to them actually is a government issued passport? Why don’t people shed a tear for 10,000 dead in an earthquake in that foreign land? Could it really be because of a passport? Is it really just because of brainwashing and indoctrination we have all received since the day we were born?..."

If You're a Christian, Muslim or Jew - You are Wrong

Great rant.

Of course, keep in mind this disclaimer, via Metafilter:

"As an agnostic, I don't really have an opinion either way on the big questions. But it sounds like the author is really angry at the side effects of organized religion, not the existence of religion itself. "

The Blog | Cenk Uygur: If You're a Christian, Muslim or Jew - You are Wrong | The Huffington Post:
"We live in a twisted world, where right is wrong and wrong reigns supreme. It is a chilling fact that most of the world's leaders believe in nonsensical fairytales about the nature of reality. They believe in Gods that do not exist, and religions that could not possibly be true. We are driven to war after war, violence on top of violence to appease madmen who believe in gory mythologies.

These men are called Christians, Muslims and Jews.

Osama bin Laden is insane. He believes God whispered in the ear of Mohammed 1,400 years ago about how he should conquer Arabia...

He said God told him to have sex with as many of the women he met as possible. I'm sorry, I meant to say "take them as wives." God told him to kill all other tribes that stood in his way or that would not placate him with assurances of loyalty or bribes. God told him, conveniently, that everyone should follow him and never question a word he said.

He sold this bag of goods to the blithering idiots who lived in the Arabian Peninsula at the time. If that weren't shockingly stupid enough, over a billion people continue to believe the convenient lies that Mohammed told all that time ago -- to this very day.

We live in a world full of insane people. Sanity is an island battered in an ocean of frothing delusion. The people who believe in science are the minority. The people who believe in bloody fairytales are the overwhelming majority.

George W. Bush is the most powerful man alive. He is a class A imbecile. He is far less intelligent than the average Christian. But like most of the others, he believes Jesus died for his sins. That idea is so perverse and devoid of logic it should shock the conscience. Instead, it gets him elected, and earns him the reverence of a great percentage of America. America! The most advanced country in the world -- run by a bunch of villagers who still believe Santa Claus is going to save them.

There is no damn Easter Bunny. There is no Jesus waiting to return... These were all convenient lies from the men of those times to gain power. Their actions were rational -- they wanted to deceive their brethren so that they could amass power. I get their motivations. But I cannot, for the life of me, understand our motivations, thousands of years later, still following the conmen of yesteryear into our gory, bloody, violent end.

Jesus is said to have said on the cross, "My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?" Because Jesus was insane and the God he thought would rescue him did not exist. And he died on that cross like a fool. He fancied himself the son of God and he could barely convince twelve men to follow him at a time when the world was full of superstition.

...Rational human beings shouldn't believe this kind of nonsense. Yet most of the world does.

If a man today killed his only son to show how much he loved other people, he would be considered a madman, locked in jail and earn society's contempt. Yet we think this is some sort of noble act by our Father in Heaven.

...I know most of you don't actually read your religious texts, and when you do, you assiduously try to avoid the parts that make no sense whatsoever or hide underneath the comforting grasp of your religious leaders who have concocted a bunch of circular logic (a crime to even use that word in regards to Christianity, Islam or Judaism) to shield you from the obvious folly of the written text.

So, I'm not calling you stupid if you haven't really read the material. And I know how powerful brainwashing is. We all received it when we were young and it is exceedingly difficult to break its grasp. But people dance around the issue out of politeness because they don't want to call you what you are -- ignorant.

There are a lot of people I love dearly and respect wholeheartedly who believe in religion. I hate to do this to them. But we have killed far too many people, wasted far too much time on this nonsense for us to keep going in this direction for fear of offense.

Jesus was a lunatic. God is not coming to your rescue. He hasn't come to anyone's rescue in thousands of years, including Jesus. Mohammed was a power hungry, scam artist and ruthless conqueror. Moses and Abraham were figments of the imagination of some long dead rabbi. He would probably laugh his ass off at all of you who still believe the fairytales he made up thousands of years ago. He probably wouldn't even believe it if you told him.

Did I mention Judaism? The chosen people? Come on, get off it. People walk around in clothes from 18th century Russia, thinking they have been chosen by God when they look like a bunch of jackasses. I'm tired of all the deaths because we did not want to give offense. Orthodox Jews are wrong and ridiculous.

As are the orthodox and fundamentalists of all of the religions. It says in the Bible that it is an abomination to wear clothes made of two different cloths or to eat shellfish. If you think God will hate you because you mixed wool and linen or because you ate some shrimp, you are insane.

How long are we going to dance around the 800-pound gorilla in the room? The world is run by madmen. It's not just Bush and bin Laden. It is the leader of all of the countries in the Middle East, almost all of the Americas and most of the rest of the world.

Have I offended you? That's too bad. Stop killing each other in the name of false and ridiculous Gods and I will stop ridiculing you. Trust me, your offense is much worse than mine.

Right now as you read this, there are ignorant, hateful Muslims teaching other ignorant Muslims how to put on a suicide belt. There are orthodox Jews telling other Jews how they must never leave their "holy land" no matter what the consequences are to other human beings. They assure their followers -- remember, they are not the chose ones, we are. If we crush and oppress them, don't worry, God will excuse it, and even desires it, because He is on our side.

There are maniacal Christians who are praying for the end of time. Who are hoping that most of the world's population is wiped off the face of the Earth by their vengeful and murderous God. Whom they believe is, ironically, a loving God. Unless, of course, you make the fatal mistake of not kissing his ass and appeasing him, in which case he will slaughter you and condemn you to eternal torture. What kind of sick people believe this?

The kind who live next to you. The kind who voted for George Bush. The kind who send their religious leaders to the White House to argue against even-handedness in the Middle East because it would prevent their sick prophecy. The kind who have undue influence over how we use the greatest and most lethal army ever built by man.

If you don't want to be called ignorant or misinformed, then get informed. Learn the real nature of our universe and put aside old wives tales about resurrected Gods, omniscient prophets and a guy who could split the Red Sea but couldn't find where he's going in the desert for forty years.

It's the year 2005. Let's start acting like it."

And a Catholic accountant shall lead them...

Ben Mack, kicking all kinds of lucidity and insight...

Propaganda Is The Opiate Of The Masses:
"...Marketing affects behavior or it’s not good marketing. Behaviors are changed by altering perceptions. When we see things differently we act differently. Beliefs, attitudes and constructions of categories are the primary levers of shifting perception. Marketing manipulates the meaning of symbols, images and associations. Marketing is applied semantics.

...Propaganda is marketing. Many Americans are waking up from a propaganda induced coma yelling, “They lied!” Great. Many of these same folks then rant about the evils of propaganda. I respect their anger. But, bashing propaganda strengthens the control of the world’s greatest oppressor, our present form of world government, Corporatocracy.

My comments on this subject are regularly dismissed as “merely semantic.” This perspective is blind. In business semantic analysis is often called consumer research, a $100,000,000,000/year business. That figure does not include the trillions of dollars required to leverage the insights garnered through consumer research.

Distinguishing propaganda from marketing is like holding a distinction between drugs and alcohol, it’s a semantic distinction. There are billions of dollars to be lost if alcohol is lumped in with drugs, and there are trillions of dollars to be lost if Corporatocracy is held accountable for crimes against humanity.

Semantics is the heart of marketing. While semantics is the analyses of change in meaning, marketing is about controlling the change.

Meaning is not limited to words, but words are a common way we discuss meaning. Wittgenstein asserts he can only know things for which he has a word:

“The limits of my language are the limits of my mind. All I know is what I have words for.” Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosopher (1889 – 1951)

But, it works the other way, too. Having two words can blind people from seeing that separate labels represent the same idea. Distinguishing drugs and alcohol is an obvious example...

“The basic tool for the manipulation of reality is the manipulation of words. If you can control the meaning of words, you can control the people who must use the words.” Philip K. Dick, Novelist (1928-1982)

This is a war for reality. Consensus reality is held in place by the masses. The commonly used words and their common meanings have great impact. Monitoring these meanings and affect changing is the key to Lippman’s phrase, “manufacturing consent.”

Words change. A trunk is now a place on my car where I store stuff. The word trunk came from wooden box. There is some similarity in meaning, but the word trunk has a very different meaning today. The trunk word evolved. It does help us to understand its origins to see the distinction while using the same sound, the same word, but the two different meanings suggest we currently have two distinct memes.

Words evolving on their own is very different from engineering the misuse of a word. I’m not talking about the misues of the word incredible which no longer means not-credible, but extraordinary. I’m talking, or writing, about words like dividend. Ever get a dividend from your insurance company when you weren’t an owner of their stock? I’ve met scores of people that have and they were thrilled that their company would profit-share. Dividend can mean profits to share holders, but in insurance it means it also means a refund because the insurance company charged a customer more than they were legally allowed. I was paid to interview these consumers. I’m a professional consumer researcher.

...The Catholic Church coined the word ‘propaganda’ so I don’t think limiting propaganda to governments is correct. Even if we granted The Church as a form of government, this was a term created as a means of saving money. In 1622, Pope Gregory XV commissioned the Sacra Congregatio de Propaganda Fide. One of Pope Gregory’s accountants came to the conclusion that it was more cost effective to teach Catholicism than to invade and force conversion. The accountant had the insight to recognize that a territory could be acquired by converting people’s minds. If you convert the minds, the bodies will follow. And, converting minds is less expensive than physically enforcing new sovereignty.

...The nature of propaganda is magic. Magic is the act of facilitating an immersive experience, perhaps best encapsulated by the word phantasmagorical. Something is phantasmagorical when an audience transcends their skepticism and accepts a world where the laws of nature don’t have such a firm grasp on reality. In advertising, copy can become phantasmagorical when it is stoking the passions of a diehard fan, helping them envision driving a golf ball 300 yards or bringing them into a moment of sports history that they can recollect with vivid details.

Magic can be a scary word. Last week, I was moderating a focus group among nurses of a children’s hospital and the word “magic” came up and a participant asked that we not use the word magic because it made her uncomfortable. To many, the word magic evokes a threat of eternal damnation. To these people, a magician is a spiritual terrorist, striking out to infect the unsuspecting.

I paid my way through college as a magician. There are many people who hold magic as evil. Occasionally, some audience member would want to talk to me and get me to repent and save my soul. I can’t quantify how many of these folks there are, what the incidence is, but the October 11, 2005 USA Today reported that 53% of Americans believe “God created human beings in their present form exactly as described in the Bible”. If you figure half of these folks see the word magic as demonic, that’s approximately ¼ of all Americans. So the word magic should be used with discretion. Shakespeare reminds us: the better half of valor is discretion.

So why discuss magic? There is real power in magic. Moreover, magic was the terrorism of the 17th Century. Early scholars of magic and perception were persecuted and killed. If I had used the word executed there, it would have depicted a government sanctioned killing. If I had used the word murder, there would be an illicit connotation. Word choice effects how we process information.

Word choice is a form of magic. Words create our immersive realities.

...Projection is a powerful force. We not only see what we expect to see, but often our expectations create our reality. The doctor mentioned earlier was explaining this dynamic, that a doctor’s expectation of results had a higher correlation to a patient’s success than any other element tested. I would tell your readers what Grant Morrison recommended, Fake it till you make it.

...Marketing has emerged as a legitimate face of perception study and the study of effectiveness, a socially acceptable way to understand magic theory. These techniques and discussions would have had us all murdered 200 years ago. The Puritans who founded America didn’t suffer well the presence of alternative perceptions and realities. Their righteous perceptions forbade them from considering what they didn’t already know to be true.

Righteousness induces prides which facilitates denial. The more righteous a person, the more they will unreasonable defend their perspective. Saying propaganda is inherently wrong is a damned perspective, a perspective that things are inherently good or evil. This perspective reinforces the nature of propaganda. Propaganda was created as a cost-effective tool to spread righteousness.

Propaganda is a weapon in the war for reality.

Propaganda is a tool. Holding propaganda as inherently evil is like saying that TNT is evil. They are both strong forces. They can be used constructive or destructively. The good/evil perspective is more static than how I see the universe. And, I’m also not sure that dangerous things are always bad. I’m glad propaganda was employed to defeat Hitler. Marketing has emerged as a legitimate face of perception study and the study of effectiveness, a socially acceptable way to understand magic theory. These techniques and discussions would have had us all murdered 200 years ago. The Puritans who founded America didn’t suffer well the presence of alternative perceptions and realities..."