“Without bloodshed or bombs?” Invasion by another name.

East of Gaza City – “In the early hours of Friday, 85-year-old Umm Khattab Dolah and her grandsons headed towards Gaza’s eastern border with Israel. Once there, they joined masses of Palestinians who set up tents along the border, looking out at the other side, where the Israeli army was deployed. At least 70 percent of the two million people in the Gaza Strip live in refugee camps just a few kilometres away from their original homes and villages across the border, where Zionist armed groups forcibly displaced them seven decades earlier.” So begins an Al-Jazeera story March 30, 2018.  

I came here today to call for my right of return,” Dolah told Al Jazeera. Thousands of men, women and children on Friday made their way to the makeshift tent camps erected 700 metres away from the border with Israel.”

What “right of return?” Israel is a sovereign state now, built over those 7 decades by the families of those living there. What nation on earth was not built by displacing others? That includes all those nations whose sanctimonious hand-wringing over the fate of the “Palestinians” resulted in their giving billions to leaders who used the money to encourage suicide bombers, buy rockets for Hamas and fund Swiss bank accounts for themselves. Could they have not done for their people what Israel did–build decent housing, desalinization plants for water, reliable electric generation, drip irrigation for food–instead of funding death on both sides of the border?

So now that they have done nothing with those 70 years but tried to destroy Israel–making a mess of their own lives in the process–they are claiming a “right of return”? What would any nation existing today do, if suddenly tens of thousands of people tried to invade, claiming the land is really theirs? What is this based on? 

The idea for the Great March of Return was floated around several months ago. The main goal was for refugees to demonstrate their Right of Return, based on United Nations Resolution 194 adopted in December 1948. The resolution states that Palestinian refugees “wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date”.

Oh, okay, so now they wish to return to “their homes” and “live in peace with their neighbors?” After 70 years and countless rockets and suicide bombers? To homes that don’t exist? There are no neighbors in this conflict–only enemies. 

Ahmad Abu Artema, the main organiser behind the campaign, says he came up with the idea about the March of Return when he visited the border with Israel. “When I saw the beauty of our stolen lands, the trees and the picturesque nature of it all, I wondered: why are we trapped here in a coop?” he told Al Jazeera.  Why are you “trapped in a coop?” You guys made it that way. Why is Israel so “picturesque?” Israelis made it that way.

Abu Artema then posted a message on his Facebook page asking people whether they would be interested in a peaceful border protest. The majority of responses applauded the idea, which quickly gained traction and received the backing of Palestinian political parties in the Strip, including Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Fatah and leftist parties. Oh gee, what could be more conducive to living peaceably than an idea backed by terrorist groups and murderers?

The international community has approved many resolutions, and it is time to approve the rights of the Palestinian people,” Abu Sharekh said. “Palestinian intellectuals, academics, civil society organisations, students and women all embraced the concept of the march as a peaceful movement, similar to Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement,” he continued. “Marches” occur within national borders, and when the marchers decide to cross the border, then what is it? How can an invasion be “peaceful?”

The Gaza Strip has been under an Israeli land, sea and air blockade for more than a decade. Some 80 percent of the population is dependent on humanitarian assistance, while the Strip experiences regular power outages and high unemployment. It has been dubbed as the largest open-air prison, with Palestinians needing Israeli army permits to enter and exit the Strip. “We do not need negotiations or aid from the UN. The path is clear. We want to return back peacefully to our lands without bloodshed, tanks or bombs.” I sympathize with their plight, and believe that there is a peaceful way to integrate Palestinians into Israel. It starts with asking Israel, “how can I contribute to your future?” Or maybe, it starts with asking yourselves, “how can we convince Israel that we can be an asset rather than an enemy?” Claiming your “right of return” is about as far from the right attitude as possible–it is the attitude of someone who has fouled your own nest and covets what others have built, amid your “bloodshed and bombs.”

Author’s note: The following passage was added 5/22/2018, excerpted from Frontpage Mag, from an article THE REAL AGENDA BEHIND THE “RIGHT OF RETURN”. “In fact, the 1948-49 War of Independence produced not only Arab-Palestinian refugees, but even more Jewish refugees from Arab countries.  These Jewish refugees lived in their native Arab states long before the arrival of Islam.  However, unlike the Arab-Palestinian refugees, who were deliberately kept in refugee camps and denied citizenship in Arab countries, Jewish refugees from Arab states were successfully absorbed in Israel despite difficult economic conditions in the early years of the state.”

The following passage was added 5/26/2018, excerpted from the Wa. Post: The May 9 The World article “A modest opening for new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem” described what the Palestinians call the Nakba, or “catastrophe,” as the anniversary of the date on which Palestinians “lost their land when the Israeli state was created in 1948.” That is partially true: In the 1948 Israeli War of Independence, the Palestinians did in fact lose what was offered to them with the loss of the West Bank; the Palestinians did in fact lose what was offered to them with the loss of Gaza. But the dark little secret that the manipulative sentence left out was that the Palestinians lost the West Bank not to Israel but to their land-grabbing brethren Jordan. And they lost Gaza not to Israel but to their land-grabbing brethren Egypt. This set of facts is critical to assess what happened to the Palestinians and who is culpable. As most know, but The Post routinely omits, the war was started by the local Arabs and neighboring Arab countries. If the Palestinians had accepted the two-state solution of 1947, there would be no conflict today, and the two-state solution would be going on its 71st year.

 

 

Is there a “happy median” on the way down the slippery slope?

NO! I suppose I should try to explain. We tend to think of human behaviors as existing on a continuum. Take eating, for example. Between anorexia nervosa and Roman orgy gluttony, there is a range of consumption, a vast middle area, or “happy median”, which comprises varying degrees of healthy consumption. The ideal midpoint might be balancing intake of calories with calories burned. If we were to assume this continuum functions as if it is horizontal, a person starting at one extreme end is no more likely to end up at the other extreme once they decide to change, but is able to find a level they can maintain for long periods of time. However, both extremes are clearly bad. It is the middle that is healthiest.

There are also continuums with slopes, in which the high end is good and healthy and the low end is not. For example, on the continuum of opiate use, at the top is not using at all. That is best. At the bottom of the slope is addiction leading to death. I like to think of a sloped continuum like a slide that has an anchor point at the top. On a physical slide, once you let go of the anchor point, how fast you hit the bottom is determined by gravity, the coefficient of friction, your mass.

I said in a former post, The Religion of Lust, that in-between healthy, biblically based hetero-sexuality and an anything-goes mentality, there is really nothing. While it seems like sexuality, and most other human behaviors are on a continuum, certain things have an inevitability about them, once the foundation has started crumbling or the anchor point slips off your hand. Which human behaviors exist on a sloped continuum? Which of those has the steepest slope (the rules of gravity), which is greasiest (the rules of coefficient of friction) and which is the most serious (the rules of mass)? Of course, we’re talking about behavior, not slides, but there are analogies.

I assert that the continuum of sexual behavior has a healthy beginning–heterosexual within marriage–and a progressively unhealthy slide down a slope which, compared to other human behaviors, is the steepest, greasiest and most serious! What, you say? Isn’t alcoholism or opiate addiction more serious? If smoking one crack pipe leads to immediate addiction to crack, what could be steeper than that? What could be greasier than sliding all the way from a snort of cocaine to eventual death from a heroin overdose? Is anything more serious than death?

Well, see, here’s the thing: “The body is not meant for sexual immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. And God raised the Lord and will also raise us up by his power. Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never! Or do you not know that he who is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, “The two will become one flesh.” But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price.” (1 Corinthians 6.)

Corruption and immigration, with a special word to Mexico.

Transparency International defines corruption as the abuse of entrusted power for private gain. It can be classified as grand, petty and political, depending on the amounts of money lost and the sector where it occurs. Grand corruption consists of acts committed at a high level of government that distort policies or the central functioning of the state, enabling leaders to benefit at the expense of the public good. Petty corruption refers to everyday abuse of entrusted power by low- and mid-level public officials in their interactions with ordinary citizens, who often are trying to access basic goods or services in places like hospitals, schools, police departments and other agencies. Political corruption is a manipulation of policies, institutions and rules of procedure in the allocation of resources and financing by political decision makers, who abuse their position to sustain their power and wealth.

From the Immigration Policy Institute: The United States has been the top destination for international migrants since at least 1960, with one-fifth of the world’s migrants living there as of 2017. More than 43.7 million immigrants resided in the United States in 2016, accounting for 13.5 percent of the total U.S. population of 323.1 million. Immigrants and their U.S.-born children now number approximately 86.4 million people, or 27 percent of the overall U.S. population, according to the 2017 Current Population Survey (CPS).

As of 2016, these were the top immigrant groups, by approximate number, living in the U.S.: Mexico,  11.6 million; China/Hong Kong 2.4 million; India, 2.4 million; Philippines, 1.9 million; Vietnam, 1.4 million; El Salvador, 1.3 million; Cuba, 1.3 million; Dominican Republic, 1.1 million; South Korea, 1 million.

I get it, I get the argument, the emotional argument. These poor unfortunate people from all of these different countries want to come to the United States (and Canada and Western Europe). What do almost all of these countries whose immigrants want to settle here have in common? Corruption, corruption, and more corruption. Take a look at the corruption perception index map above. How much movement occurs from countries in yellow (low corruption) to countries in orange and red? VIRTUALLY NONE. The immigrant flow is entirely from high corruption to low corruption.

Sure, corruption may not be the proximal reason they leave, but it is the main cause of the other ills. Corruption flourishes in the soil provided by a worldview, their dominant religion, that: does not recognize a sovereign God; denies personal responsibility, excusing the effects of their decisions as fate or “Inshallah”; does not consider human beings intrinsically sinful…wait, what? You read that right. Religions other than Christianity do not accept that we are born in a state of rebellion against God, but since we are, Civil Government–“the authorities”–is instituted PRIMARILY for the purpose of restraining evil and protecting life, liberty and opportunity! worldviews

Some nations are still living on their “spiritual capital credit limit” and others never had any. Just like living on a credit card with a very high limit, eventually you will max out your credit! I assert that Judeo-Christian principles, and more specifically the theology of the Protestant Reformation, is the most viable source of spiritual capital on which to build a nation “of the people, by the people and for the people.”

The United States, I further assert, for all of our flaws, is the highest example of such a civil government. It is not coincidence nor accident that we are the preferred destination for the world’s immigrants. The U.S. Constitution was based on the Biblical ideas that 1-human beings’ desire for power over others needs to be restrained, because we are rebellious by nature, and if given too much power, we will want more and more and 2-the main role of civil government is to protect the doers of good and restrain and punish the doers of evil! Nations built on that foundation will be viable. Nations built on a foundation of religions that believe in the innate goodness of man, or which worship animals or a pantheon of gods, will fail. They will be the red orange corrupt zones.

If you’re a Leftist, the explanation of why the U.S. and other “western” nations are immigration magnets is simple (and simplistic): Western Imperialism, is the cause of corruption. Wrong! Corruption is homegrown. The perfectibility of Man is a myth. Now, a special word for the government of Mexico, at all levels. In 1973 I spent weeks in rural Chihuahua–in small towns mostly, or camping out–and entered and left Mexico via Ciudad Juarez. At that time, we had no sense of personal danger at all. We had lunch with Federales by the side of roads, were invited into the homes of strangers, and found the people and even the government officials friendly and open. In 1973.

In 2012, according to CNN, Mexico led the world in KFR–kidnap for ranson! Here is an excerpt: As recently as 2005, Monterrey was dubbed the safest city in Latin America by a global consulting firm. Historically a financial bastion, it was in 2010 that Monterrey became victim to the lawlessness and violence spreading throughout the country. Soon, parts of Mexico’s third-largest city turned into a cartel battleground where grenade attacks, shootouts and kidnappings dominated headlines.

While on a national level the government has fought the drug cartels (not very successfully), Mexico is so full of corruption at every level of government, cartel-related violence and the destruction of law and order has continued apace. Acapulco, once a paradise of beauty–notwithstanding full of tourists–is now all but deserted due to violence. Mexico loves to lecture us on how we should treat their illegal immigrants, but if an American was caught in Mexico illegally, they would be jailed with little or no due process! Can you clean yourself up Mexico so your citizens can have a chance to lead their lives? Not so far. As far as the corrupt members of the Mexican police, politicos and military goes–YOU SUCK.

Of course, if there were no demand for drugs, primarily from the U.S. there would be no drug cartels. Maybe not even enough money to spare for corruption. Who knows, maybe the habit of corruption would find another outlet. We’ll probably never know, since demand for drugs isn’t likely to end anytime soon.

 

 

“Free Trade, Open Borders, Death to your principles!

This is an observation by my friend Robert Andrews, from his blog Two Edges of the Sword  two edges: “Based on God’s model in the Bible for civil government- the Hebrew Republic in the Bible – is open borders, free trade, open everything! Government has nothing to say about trade. Everyone in the world is free to come and enjoy the blessings of God poured out on America – with this minor caveat: Everyone must be a practicing, Bible believing Christian to be a citizen. This means true diversity in every external characteristic but complete unity of faith.

“No matter one’s faith, he can live here as a “sojourner” or “stranger,” accepted and honored, but not voting. Also, as with citizens, no welfare, there is no government assistance of any kind. This is beyond the scope of government, which is only to punish law breakers and protect law keepers. The sojourner has only the freedom to do as he pleases within the laws of the country, even not be a Christian if he so desires – just no voting. Picture that! I have written a short book proposing that for America, what changes that would necessitate, what the nation would look like, and how it could happen, based the biblical model – Let Earth Receive Her King.

“However, we are far from His revealed will today. One of the two legitimate, biblical uses of God’s law is as a mirror to show us how we are failing to keep it and to bring us to repentance. This is living ‘by faith,’ but until we arrive at faith, the law’s second legitimate use is as a fence to hold us in place ‘before faith comes’ (Galatians 3:23). This is where we are as a nation today: “Before faith comes,” and the Lord answers the prayer He called us to pray that His kingdom come His will be done on the earth. Until that day when our country follows the biblical pattern we will need fences – tariffs, protectionism, etc.”

The following excerpt comes from Pat Buchanan: This free trade, open borders cult first flowered in 18th-century Britain. The St. Paul of this post-Christian faith was Richard Cobden. “I look farther; I see in the Free Trade principle which shall act on the moral world as the principle of gravitation in the universe — drawing men together, thrusting aside the antagonisms of race, and creed, and language, and uniting us in the bonds of eternal peace.” Britain converted to this utopian faith and threw open her markets to the world. Across the Atlantic, however, another system, that would be known as the “American System,” had been embraced.

 

The second bill signed by President Washington was the Tariff Act of 1789. Said the Founding Father of his country in his first address to Congress: “A free people … should promote such manufactures as tend to make them independent on others for essential, particularly military supplies.” This was wisdom born of experience. At Yorktown, Americans had to rely on French muskets and ships to win their independence. They were determined to erect a system that would end our reliance on Europe for the necessities of our national life, and establish new bonds of mutual dependency — among Americans. Britain’s folly became manifest in World War I, as a self-reliant America stayed out, while selling to an import-dependent England the food, supplies and arms she needed to survive but could not produce.

America’s own first major steps toward free trade, open borders and globalism came with JFK’s Trade Expansion Act and LBJ’s Immigration Act of 1965. By the end of the Cold War, however, a reaction had set in, and a great awakening begun. The new resistance of Western man to the globalist agenda is now everywhere manifest. We see it in Trump’s hostility to NAFTA, his tariffs, his border wall. We see it in England’s declaration of independence from the EU in Brexit. We see it in the political triumphs of Polish, Hungarian and Czech nationalists, in anti-EU parties rising across Europe, in the secessionist movements in Scotland and Catalonia and Ukraine, and in the admiration for Russian nationalist Vladimir Putin.

Europeans have begun to see themselves as indigenous peoples whose Old Continent is mortally imperiled by the hundreds of millions of invaders wading across the Med and desperate to come and occupy their homelands. Who owns the future? Who will decide the fate of the West? The problem of the internationalists is that the vision they have on offer — a world of free trade, open borders and global government — are constructs of the mind that do not engage the heart. Men will fight for family, faith and country. But how many will lay down their lives for pluralism and diversity? Who will fight and die for the Eurozone and EU? 

THE PRINCIPLE OF ECONOMIC “SELF-SUFFICIENCY”, THAT SENTENCE IN BOLD PRINT, IS THE CRUX OF THE MATTER. IT WAS THE PRINCIPLE THAT ENABLED THE NEHEMIAH-LED TO REBUILD JERUSALEM WHILE HOLDING OFF THE PAGAN HORDES WHO WOULD UNDERMINE THEIR WORK. IT IS THE PRINCIPLE, TRANSLATED INTO INDIVIDUAL RATHER THAN COMMUNITY FARMS, THAT ENABLED THE PLYMOUTH COLONY TO SURVIVE RATHER THAN STARVE. “OPEN BORDERS, FREE TRADE” IS THE DREAM OF SOCIALISM. NO THANKS.

A very scary warning from the Old Testament–will you heed it?

Deuteronomy 29:18-22. “Beware lest there be among you a man or woman or clan or tribe whose heart is turning away today from the Lord our God to go and serve the gods of those nations. Beware lest there be among you a root bearing poisonous and bitter fruit, 19 one who, when he hears the words of this sworn covenant, blesses himself in his heart, saying, ‘I shall be safe, though I walk in the stubbornness of my heart.’ This will lead to the sweeping away of moist and dry alike.20 The Lord will not be willing to forgive him, but rather the anger of the Lord and his jealousy will smoke against that man, and the curses written in this book will settle upon him, and the Lord will blot out his name from under heaven. 21 And the Lord will single him out from all the tribes of Israel for calamity, in accordance with all the curses of the covenant written in this Book of the Law.”

This is one of the most dire warnings in the entire Bible–OT and NT. It assumes this “man”, which of course includes women, knows he/she is walking contrary to the Lord’s commands and desires. He/she knows and doesn’t care, yet still, hypocritically, expects safety. Safety comes from the Lord–nowhere else. “I can spit in the Lord’s face and He will still protect me” is what our hypocrite thinks. Why would He protect you? “Because He loves me?” The Lord does love you, but His righteousness does not mix with your willful bragging of your being beyond His discipline while being under His protection.

Can you read the whole warning and still be prideful in your ways? Then this is for you. Proverb 29:1. “He who is often reproved, yet stiffens his neck, will suddenly be broken beyond healing.” 

Rebellion in the age of Leftist conformity.

From The Weekly Standard, March 26, 2018. (bold print and underlining are mine)

The school walkout—or to speak correctly, the Enough! National School Walkout—took place on March 14. The point of the event was to call attention to the need for gun-control legislation. Students were to walk out of their classrooms at 10:00 a.m. for 17 minutes to remember the 17 people killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Thousands of students took part in the nationwide event, which was duly pronounced a success by the enthusiastic news media. The Enough! walkout was planned by the organizers of the 2017 Women’s March, and like that event it was hard to know what the aim was or what constituted success. The spectacle of kids standing around in school parking lots instead of sitting in classrooms seems unlikely to pressure state and federal lawmakers to alter their views on gun legislation.

“The most passionate among the protester-students—my teenaged daughter holds this view even more firmly than I do—feel strongly about the issue of gun-control precisely because they know hardly anything about it. Which is why, as anybody with a touch of common sense might have predicted, a huge proportion of the walkout participants had no interest in addressing gun violence and mainly enjoyed the chance to get out of class and crack jokes with friends.

“But a walkout is supposed to be an act of rebellion, of resistance. It involves risk. Like a strike at a factory—if you participate, you might get what you want or you might lose your job. The Enough! walkout was a safe gesture, honored by our governmental and cultural authorities. The national news media—consider the lavish coverage in the New York Times—practically begged the kids to go through with it and heaped praise on them when they did. A more conformist rebellion would be difficult to imagine. These woke revolutionaries simply did what they were told, when they were told, by faraway professional agitators.”

The article is quite a bit longer, but I wanted to summarize the most important part. “Modern American high schools are places of intense conformity. Fear of exclusion cripples and terrorizes its young victims; often you can see it on their faces. They do and think what they’re told. They even protest as they’re told. Some rebellion.”

Meanwhile, at New Prague high school in Minnesota, senior Andy Dalsin, who dared to make a sign expressing his own opinion, was threatened with arrest for that crime. As can be seen in the photo (featured image, above), Dalsin got about 50 other students to sign his poster. When he went outside to participate in the walkout, Dalsin was confronted by New Prague’s principal — Lonnie Seifert. School police officer John Madigan followed close behind.

As Dalsin stood in the back of the gathering holding up his sign, Seifert approached and told him to hand it over. Citing a school district policy prohibiting the “distribution” of “non-school-sponsored material,” Seifert told Dalsin that he could not display the message because he had not cleared it with school administrators 24 hours in advance of the protest. Dalsin respectfully refused to turn over his sign, arguing that he had a constitutional right to display it. Seifert then asked Dalsin to leave school grounds, to which the student also refused, once again citing his First Amendment right to express his political opinions in school. Finally, Seifert upped the ante by threatening Dalsin with arrest. As the senior recalled, Seifert told him: “I’m going to have to have Officer Madigan escort you off the premises. If you don’t comply, I will have him arrest you.”

My point in presenting these two articles is an old one. I wrote this August 16, 2017. virtue signaling Most modern “protests” have become simply a form of mass “virtue-signaling”, demonstrating cost-less “compassion”, and the only risks are taken by those who have a contrary opinion, i.e. non-Leftists. Bureaucratic rules, especially like those enforced by the EEOC, are used to silence or punish (if they won’t be silenced) dissenters to the virtue-signaling movements. Can legally enforced conformity be far behind? It is quaint to think how many of us used to worry that the Right–conservatives–would usher in the 1984-style totalitarianism. It is clear now that such is more likely to come from Left field!

Is A.I. the future, or the end of humanity?

Amazon is running two seasons of the TV show made in Great Britain called Humans. It takes place in a time when synthetic human beings–synths–are produced by factories. They look like human beings and they do the menial tasks that human beings use servants for. Not an uncommon theme for science fiction movies. But surprisingly, in this show very significant issues are raised in a very intelligent and artistic manner.

To make it interesting and introduce high drama, five of these synths have been imbued by their creator with human-like emotions and consciousness (I will call them CS-synths), while the rest of them–millions–are merely human-looking machines very well programmed (call them Robo-synths). Rather than go through the rather complex plots and characters, I find it more interesting to discuss the philosophical questions that are being raised:

  • An R-synth named Odi was a household servant, but after the death of his owner, someone decided to give him “freedom” by uploading a special module which inserted human-like emotions into his programming, making him a CS-synth. He was then encouraged to “enjoy his freedom and explore his possibilities.” Having had no experience with either, spent all his time either aimlessly wandering or cowering in fear of discovery. Eventually, he “killed” himself by destroying his programming, but the note he left was significant. He said he was originally in a state with plenty of purpose–serving his owner–but no freedom. Once he had “freedom”, he had no purpose, and that was a far worse state to him.
  • A CS-synth named Karen pretended to be human–in fact was able to masquerade as a police officer–so successfully that a human officer fell in love with her. Even after he discovered she was artificial, the love remained. During the course of a conversation, he casually said “I have a brain, that synth merely has clever programming.” Her reply: “How do you know the difference?”
  • A little girl named Sophie starts to “identify as a synth.” Her behavior becomes more and more automaton-like, voice inflection and emotions become flatter, and she imitates the household synth by obsessively cleaning and arranging things. When asked why she wants to be a synth, she replies, “I would be perfect, no mistakes, forgetting nothing, and I wouldn’t have to feel anything like sadness or anger or fear.”
  • A famous researcher in the A.I. field, Dr. Morrow, is trying to keep her daughter, who died from a fall when she was a teenager, alive digitally by storing her visual memories on a computer (don’t ask me how). When she is able to link her daughter’s “consciousness” program with a huge capacity network that spans the globe, “she” is no longer limited to a laptop computer but is able to inhabit any computer all over the world. When Dr. Morrow offers to transfer her consciousness to an actual human body, her response is, “why would I want to be limited to a single body when I can go anywhere I want instantly? Her mother replies, “so you can feel the sensations you were once able to feel.” Her daughter rejects the trade-off, thus defining herself as her consciousness rather than her form. I can relate to this one. I suffered a stroke 2 years ago, and have hardly improved. My mind and consciousness (are they the same or not?) are extremely sharp, and my body is a prison of pain and limitations which can’t even taste.
  • Towards the end of the second season, a CS-synth who fell in love with, and then was betrayed by a man, is speaking to a person who has been very sympathetic to synths. “Humans have no intrinsic value. You thought you did until we came along.”

Well, what is the “intrinsic value” of being human? Where does that value originate? Elon Musk, creator and prime mover of Tesla and Space-X believes the A.I. is more dangerous to our future than nuclear weapons.elon musk AI

Monetizing humanity.

This–to me–brilliant and eloquent article from Bloomberg Crypto is called “bitcoin is ridiculous” and you can read the whole thing at this link: bitcoin

Here are some of his observations (for once I have nothing to add):

“The way you monetize vast swaths of humanity is by creating products that people use a lot—perhaps a search engine such as Google or a social network like Facebook. You build big transactional web platforms beneath them that provide amazing things, like search results or news feeds ranked by relevance, and then beneath all that you build marketplaces for advertising—a true moneymaking machine. If you happen to create an honest-to-god marketplace, you can get unbelievably rich.

“In the past, building a market required users, products, all that mess—farmers taking their plump pigs to market. What we have now is a means of spinning up any number of auctions, a method for the mass manufacture of middlemen. This is the destiny of Silicon Valley. And with ICOs and Bitcoin exchanges, we have a marketplace to value marketplaces. What in Galt’s name could be wrong with that? We’ve never (surveys vast tracts of empty Florida homes) had trouble before.

“America understands new abstractions by financializing them. It’s how our culture absorbs information. Taxicabs, spare bedrooms, public education—we see markets everywhere. Bitcoin and the blockchain came prefinancialized, intended as a replacement for central banking. But what if the most important thing the blockchain offers isn’t a replacement for money but a new way to build culture?

“Acquiring Bitcoin is like using an ATM, except instead of government-backed money you get proof that a computer somewhere solved an automated puzzle faster than other computers, and instead of using an ATM card you’re using an auto-generated token that only you have, and instead of connecting to a bank you’re connecting to a decentralized network of computers that collectively maintain and update copies of a massive historical database of transactions—and that also collectively validate transactions, using, well, math, and spit out new Bitcoins from time to time, to reward the puzzle solvers.

“Slow exhale. Almost there. And instead of buying a six-pack from someone behind a counter, you’re transferring some amount of Bitcoin to another anonymous token. Over time, all the transactions that people make get lumped into blocks and validated, and they get a special code that takes into account all the codes in the blocks that came before, and thus you have it: a blockchain. According to Bitcoin.org, the Bitcoin blockchain is about 145 gigabytes, though it will be bigger by the time you read this. You can download the whole thing, the entire portrait of the Bitcoin economy, onto a USB drive.

“That all of this adds up to money is ridiculous, and we should probably mock it more than we do. Consider Bitcoin a grand middle finger. It’s a prank, almost a parody of the global financial system, that turned into a bubble. “You plutocrats of Davos may think you control the global money supply,” the pranksters seem to say. “But humans will make an economy out of anything. Even this!” To be frank, central banking never really ground my gears; it’s just another one of those vast enterprises that we cower beneath, like network TV or religion. But I can see how it would piss people off. Bits gonna coin.

“Bubbles are melancholy things—swirls of lies and optimism used to hide a million unrealized yearnings. Bitcoin will crash because of course it will. Bubbles burst. The real estate and athletics management people go home, and the believers remain, meeting up, planning new markets. It could take years, it could take a decade, but the blockchain freaks have a world in their heads, and they won’t rest until it’s real. That the rest of us live here, too, is the least of their concerns. Some of the things they’ll do will be magical, community-building, economically thrilling. Others may keep us up at night.

“Still, I can’t help but look on in envy. Not for the believers’ possible wealth, because that will elude most. (Even in a distributed money platform, wealth has a way of finding only a few pockets.) I’m jealous that they’ll experience it all: the crash, the rejection, and then the slow rebuild as they learn the difference between toys and tools. They get to participate in the screaming edge of culture.”

The religion of lust–this won’t end well.

I compared the 5 dominant (by number of adherents) religions in an earlier post.WORLDVIEWS  All dealt with lust in their own way, but only one celebrated lust–secular humanism.  Some recent information has me leaning towards classifying lust as a religion itself, and perhaps the most hypocritical of all. MY COMMENTS ARE BELOW, CAPITALIZED. Starting the hypocrisy parade are some quotes from Chai Feldblum, a commissioner with the U.S. EEOC:

  • When sexual orientation and religious freedom come into conflict, “I’m having a hard time coming up with any case in which religious liberty should win… Sexual liberty should win in most cases. There can be a conflict between religious liberty and sexual liberty, but in almost all cases the sexual liberty should win because that’s the only way that the dignity of gay people can be affirmed in any realistic manner”;
  • “Just as we do not tolerate private racial beliefs that adversely affect African-Americans in the commercial arena, even if such beliefs are based on religious views, we should similarly not tolerate private beliefs about sexual orientation and gender identity that adversely affect the ability of LGBT people to live in the world”;
  • “For all my sympathy for the evangelical Christian couple who may wish to run a bed and breakfast from which they can exclude unmarried straight couples and all gay couples, this is a point where I believe the ‘zero sum’ nature of the game inevitably comes into play. And in making the decision in this zero sum game, I am convinced society should come down on the side of protecting the liberty of LGBT people.”
  • “I believe granting liberty to gay people advances a compelling government interest, that such an interest cannot be adequately advanced if ‘pockets of resistance’ to a societal statement of equality are permitted to flourish, and hence that a law that permits no individual exceptions based on religious beliefs will be the least restrictive means of achieving the goal of liberty for gay people.”

HERE IS WHAT I MEAN BY HYPOCRITICAL:  WHO CLAIMS “DISCRIMINATION” THE LOUDEST AND MOST VIOLENTLY WHENEVER THEY DON’T GET THEIR WAY? LGBT’S! YET A POWERFUL, UNACCOUNTABLE EEOC BUREAUCRAT–WHO IS APPOINTED TO ENFORCE THE LAWS SECURING LEGAL RIGHTS OF THE LARGEST NUMBER OF CITIZENS–JUSTIFIES TRAMPLING THE LEGAL RIGHTS OF THE MANY IN ORDER TO GRANT SPECIAL PRIVILEGE (what her terms “liberty” and “dignity” really mean in practice) TO A TINY GROUP WHOSE REAL AGENDA IS REPLACEMENT OF HEALTHY GOD ORDAINED SEXUALITY WITH “ANYTHING GOES.” SHE WAS RAISED IN AN ORTHODOX JEWISH HOME BY HOLOCAUST SURVIVORS, BUT HAS REPUDIATED BELIEF IN GOD. WHY? WELL, NEITHER JEWISH NOR CHRISTIAN SCRIPTURE VALIDATE LGBT’S, SO IN HER PERSONAL LIFE “SEXUAL LIBERTY” (as in libertine) HAS TRUMPED FAITH–NOW SHE’S IN A POSITION TO SPREAD HER “GOSPEL.”

Did I say “anything goes?” Here, from Huffington Post, 3/9/2018 man dolphin sex: Malcolm Brenner justifies sex with a dolphin.

In 1970, when Brenner was a college sophomore, he was given open access to the now-defunct theme park Floridaland near Sarasota to take photos for a book about the dolphin show. There, he claims, Dolly the dolphin began courting him.Malcolm Brenner was the feature of a documentary called “Dolphin Lover,” wherein Brenner was “courted” by a dolphin named Dolly he eventually has sex with. “She would rub her genital slit against me,” he says in the doc. “And if I tried to push her away, she would get very angry with me. One time, when she wanted to masturbate on my foot and I wouldn’t let her, she threw herself on top of me and pushed me down to the 12-foot bottom of the pool.” Brenner is a thinking person’s zoophile. He draws a careful distinction between zoophiles and mere bestialists, noting in “Dolphin Lover” that the latter “might just have sex with an animal and walk away,” while the former “is someone who has tender or caring emotions for their animal partner.” HE IS SERIOUS, AND IS BEING TAKEN SERIOUSLY BY HUFFINGTON POST!

Brenner was asked Does it bother you at all that people only seem to find this acceptable when it’s fantasy or an allegory? And do you think there will be a day when that changes? “Of course it bothers me. I don’t like people threatening to go Lorena Bobbitt on me because I made love with a dolphin. Will it change? Who knows? I would like to think that society will become less religious, because the prohibitions in Leviticus are the only conceivable basis for any laws against bestiality. I can’t see that my boffing my dog has any effect on society, good or ill, as long as I’m not hurting her or abusing her. Laws against animal cruelty ought to be sufficient without criminalizing the act of interspecies sex, which organizations like PETA are trying to do.”

SO, PROHIBITIONS IN LEVITICUS “THE ONLY CONCEIVABLE BASIS FOR LAWS AGAINST BESTIALITY?” REALLY? NO OTHER BASIS? AS IF HE CARES ABOUT THE EFFECTS OF HIS ACTIONS OR ATTITUDES ON SOCIETY. WHY SHOULD ANYONE CARE? HE HAS ALSO COMPARED THE “PREJUDICE” AGAINST ANIMAL-HUMAN SEX TO INTERRACIAL SEX. HOW RIDICULOUS–OBJECTIONS TO SEX BETWEEN THE RACES WAS PREJUDICE, AGAINST A MERE DIFFERENCE IN PIGMENT, BUT HE IS SAYING THAT THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PEOPLE AND ANIMALS IS NO MORE SIGNIFICANT THAN A DIFFERENCE IN HUMAN PIGMENTATION! CHAI FELDBLUM IS SAYING THAT PIGMENTATION IS NO DIFFERENT–FOR PURPOSES OF ENFORCING “RIGHTS” OF ONE GROUP OVER ANOTHER–THAN SEXUAL BEHAVIOR, WHICH IS VOLITIONAL. THAT’S “REASON” IN THE ABSENCE OF GOD.

GIVEN AN ABSENCE OF BELIEF IN GOD WHO MADE MAN IN HIS IMAGE, THERE IS NO ULTIMATE BASIS FOR CARING ABOUT HOW YOUR ACTIONS AFFECT OTHERS! THE BIBLE SAYS GOD MADE HUMAN SEXUALITY FOR: PROCREATION, COMPANIONSHIP AND PLEASURE–WITHIN THE BONDS OF MAN-WOMAN MARRIAGE. THE RELIGION OF LUST SAYS “ANYTHING GOES BETWEEN MAN AND BEAST.” BETWEEN THOSE EXTREMES LIES…..NOTHING REALLY. BECAUSE DEPARTURE FROM THE FORMER INEVITABLY LEADS DOWN THE ROAD TO THE LATTER!

The positive side of social media…maybe.

From the blog called the Sports PigMeet Boise State University kicker Kyle Brotzman. Brotzman single-handedly cost Boise State their chance at a national championship (2010), a BCS Bowl appearance, an undefeated season or even a WAC championship. Brotzman, who had missed just three kicks all season, missed two incredibly short field goals within two minutes. Brotzman’s misses resulted in a 34-31 overtime win for the University of Nevada over the Broncos. BSU was undefeated and ranked #3 in the human polls and fourth by the BCS. A win over nationally-ranked Nevada would have probably vaulted Boise State past TCU and into a major BCS game, like the Rose Bowl. Boise State actually led the game 17-0 and 24-7. However, Nevada stormed back in the second half and tied the game at 31-31 with just nine seconds left. At that point, Boise State quarterback/Heisman Trophy candidate Kellen Moore made what might have been the greatest play of his stellar career. Moore heaved a hail mary pass downfield which was caught by receiver Titus Young. Young not only hauled in the catch, but had the presence of mind to call timeout with just one second left (later changed to two seconds.) Brotzman then trotted on the field for a 26-yard game-winning field goal. Make that a POTENTIAL 26-yard game-winning field goal. Brotzman missed, pushing the kick to the right.

Ordinarily, that alone would have been enough to place Brotzman in the sports Hall of Shame but he wasn’t through for the evening. Brotzman missed another short kick in overtime, this time from just 29 yards. The second miss was too much for Boise State to overcome. Nevada kicker Anthony Martinez kicked a 34-yarder to put BSU into their misery and win the game for the Wolfpack.

From ESPN: It didn’t take long for angry fans to unleash their frustration on Brotzman, who grew up in the Boise area. Within hours, the Ada County Sheriff’s Department got a report about callers leaving obnoxious, harassing telephone messages with a woman thought to be related to Brotzman. Then dozens of Facebook pages emerged, some filled with ugly name-calling, jabs and taunts aimed at Brotzman. Supporters responded just as quickly, starting “Bronco Nation Loves Kyle Brotzman” or “We Still Love Kyle Brotzman” pages and posting hundreds of messages of support for the beleaguered kicker. As of Monday afternoon, more than 21,600 people had clicked on the Like button for those pages.

At the time, I was a superfan of Boise State, their coach Chris Peterson (now putting the U. Wa. Huskies back in championship contention) and their small but precocious quarterback, Kellen Moore (college record: 50 wins, 3 losses by a total of 7 points), and a super UNFAN of social media, particularly Facebook (Twitter was still relatively insignificant in 2010). I decided to perform a personal experiment. I monitored two Facebook pages that were hastily put up after that game: Bronco Nation Hates Kyle Brotzman (the 1st one up) and Bronco Nation Loves Kyle Brotzman, and for about 2 hours I kept checking each of them for “likes.” During that same time period, the “hates” page got about 300-400 likes, the “loves” page got over 12,000! Granted, Kyle was a local kid, a past hero of BSU games, the leading scorer in school history….stop here a second. Was all of that cancelled by 2 missed kicks? I guess that’s the world of sports “fans.” Now, where was I? Oh yeah, granted all that stuff in Kyle’s favor, and the fact that Boise, Idaho is NOT New York or the left coast, still it seems to me that, at least as BSU fans go, reasonable and kind people still outnumber knuckleheads. If only we could generalize these results to the world at large.

For you sports fans, note that BSU quarterback Kellen Moore played in the NFL as a backup for Detroit and Dallas, and is now quarterbacks coach for Dallas Cowboys. What about the quarterback for the Nevada Wolfpack? His name is Colin Kaepernick–you’ve no doubt heard of him. He’s the “protest coach” for a whole generation of millionaire “indentured slaves.”