Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Daily Kos call to action against internet bill

Please take a moment to email your senators and ask them to oppose the so-called "Protect IP Act."

Protect IP is legislation that would -- no exaggeration -- destroy the social web as we know it. In short, this proposed law would allow corporate copyright holders the ability to cut off funding and compel the government to shut down websites they deem infringing, without the need of a court order. (See here for more information on this devastating bill.)

This poorly conceived piece of legislation has been rushed through Congress without proper debate, with only Sen. Ron Wyden of Oregon standing between it and the president's desk. Pro-censorship forces have spent over $90 million to get this bill passed, we have, well, social media to fight back.

If you value Daily Kos, or Facebook, or Twitter, or any website which invites your participation, please take a moment to contact your senator.


Markos Moulitsas
Publisher, Daily Kos

Monday, November 28, 2011

Gregory Desilet

In this IPS thread I am re-opening some previous discussions we've had with and about Greg in the previous forum, as well as this one. (See it for ongoing discussion.) Here are the links to the prior Gaia threads on Derrida and synergist spirituality. In this post from the OOO thread I introduced his new book, Radical Atheism and New Spirituality. Therein I linked to an Integral World article that highlights a few excerpts of the book. I will include the referenced passage from that post below in some more lengthy excerpts:

"The nature of being may be such that it can only reveal itself partially...there are alternative economies of order, economies that see partiality and limited perspective as a consequence of the nature of being itself.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Christian A-theism

In Bryant's blog post on a-theism he mentions that by his definition there can be such a chimera as a-theistic religion. As example he gives Episcopal minister Jack Spong. (Also see the IPS thread on this for ongoing discussion.) Bryant says:

"Episcopal minister Jack Spong’s theology, for example, would fit very well with a-theism in this sense. It is not Bishop Spong’s siding with science that makes his theology consistent with a-theism (though kudos for him!), but rather his thesis that transcendent God (the myth) literally dies with Jesus. The Jesus-event, under this reading, becomes the assertion of a theology of immanence, a rejection of transcendence, and the resurrection and ascension refer not to something literal, but rather to the emergence of a new kind of community no longer based on an essence stemming from kinship relations and without identity: a queer community not unlike the show Heroes. Jesus’s 'resurrection' would lie in the work of this purely immanent community with no criteria for membership and no signifier or membership that could define it. It would be a community of fragments without law, kinship, or national guarantee. Paradoxically, the least Christian thing one could do under this reading would be to call oneself a Christian or join a Christian community as that would immediately set up a logic of membership defining an in-group and an out-group."

From the wikipedia entry on Spong:

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Taibbi on what the pepper spraying reveals

The UC Davis pepper-spraying is a symptom of a long line of erosions to the people's rights. Taibbi with usual aplomb explores how we came to this. Some excerpts:

"When we militarized our society in response to the global terrorist threat, we created a new psychological atmosphere in which the use of force and military technology became a favored method for dealing with dissent of any kind.

Because of the countless decisions we made in years past to undermine our own attitudes toward the rule of law and individual rights. Every time we looked the other way when the president asked for the right to detain people without trials, to engage in warrantless searches, to eavesdrop on private citizens without even a judge knowing about it, we made it harder to answer the question: What is it we’re actually defending?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sachs on the Super Committee's big lie

Jeffrey Sachs once again speaks truth to power as the deadline for the Super Committee approaches without a glimmer of hope that it will resolve anything. One reason is that it assumes the answer lies in cutting those evil government programs that help people while leaving off the table increasing tax revenues just a pinch more on the top 1%. That's the big lie, that raising those taxes even a couple of points will destroy the economy. In case anyone is still living under a rock, the economy has already been destroyed for the 99%. Sure, it's still doing fine for the 1%, and the likes of the Super Committee is dedicated to keeping it that way, since their pockets are lined by those taskmasters. Following are excerpts from Sachs' article today.

"The big political lie of the Super Committee is that the deficit must be closed mainly by cutting government spending rather than by raising taxes on corporations and the super-rich. Both parties are complicit. The Republicans want to close the deficit entirely by cutting spending; Obama has brandished the formula of $3 of cuts for every $1 of tax revenues. On either approach, the poor and middle class would suffer grievously while the rich and powerful would win yet again.

Steve Jobs, and those who buy his products, are assholes

Matt Taibbi satirizes our complicity in enabling child labor abuse by making consumer choices to buy the products of the asshole who created them. Here are some excerpts from his 11/16/11 blog post:

“Steve Jobs...was undeniably a pathologically driven and totally ruthless corporate competitor who would have screwed his own mother out of her last penny, who took credit for inventions that were not entirely his own, and engaged in serial underhanded mistreatment of colleagues and employees alike, all in the name of bringing us handy gadgets at cheap prices.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

AQAL objects & Tom Murray

The IPS OOO thread turned back to how AQAL might view objects, which let to a new thread on the work of Tom Murray. Following are the initial posts:


Speaking of OOO and AQAL, Morton addresses AQAL in this post.  I will return to this -- for now, I just want to observe that I think he misreads the meaning of 'object' in AQAL.  His list of objects (the Pope, flapjacks, etc) could also be classified as objects in AQAL-speak.


A couple of quick points. Yes, AQAL could classify such as holons. But If I'm not mistaken (and I might be, not keeping up with the kenndashians) kennilingus still adheres to the distinction between sentient and insentient holons. Not only does OOO challenge this form of correlationism but Edwards' critique of how kennilingus reduces the objective quadrant to exterior material stuff without the same developmental complexity as interior 'objects.' Granted there are places in kennilingus that say the material is just as complex, with the higher categories of subtle and causal 'exterior' objects, but this contention is neither consistent or coherent as we've examined before in this forum (probably the old one at Gaia). Also granted with the 'zones' there is an inside and outside to both interior and exterior quadrants but again Edwards breaks down the inconsistency in that AQAL concept and offers a way forward within the AQAL system. does so as well, with similar sounding arguments from his AQAL perspective. Morton gets at this bias in his comments. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Hail Cthulhu

A quick comment on Sam Mickey's article on object oriented theology. He speculates that God might resemble Cthulhu, which reminds me of previous IPS forum threads here and here. Perhaps in some twisted and horrific way we might find some clues there to our inquires here on OOO?

One aspect of Cthulhu that comes immediately to mind is that s/he/it is radically other, cannot be comprehended, let alone barely imagined is the most vague of ways.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Objects & elements, endo and exo-relations

Since OOO is still the mainstay of my philosophical investigations these days, I offer a few more excerpts from the IPS discussion on the topic below.


I had something of an OOO weekend -- reading The Quadruple Object, reading three chapters from The Speculative Turn, and waking up at 4 am on Saturday and going downstairs to write out about four pages of notes on the interrelations between, and mutual challenges posed by, OOO, Integral, quantum, and SpinbitZ-ian perspectives.  I may turn those notes into a post or blog at some point.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Jim Wallis on political morality and jobs

Wallis is one of my favorite Christian writers because he fights for the people against corrupt corporate greed and avarice. His latest article in Huff Post, as usual, nails it for me. Some excerpts:

"While God cannot be said to support a particular piece of legislation, it is imperative that we ask how our moral values influence policy decisions and priorities. The country's major religious traditions have significant areas of disagreement, but one area that unites them all is concern about inequality.

A survey released this week by the Public Religion Research Institute shows that majorities in every major religious category -- as well as the religiously unaffiliated -- all believe that the country would be better off if the distribution of wealth was more equal.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Integral Objects

Following are more excerpts from out ongoing discussion of OOO at IPS, from the most recent posts:


Recall this post on Varela and teleology. An autopoeitic object might increase its complexity in response to a perturbation in order to adapt, yet is it necessary to ascribe teleos to this increase in complexity? It seems Bryant would agree with Varela on this point.

Unions win in Ohio

Yesterday a referendum to reverse Ohio Senate Bill 2 won handily with 61% of the vote, thereby reinstating collective bargaining rights previously stripped by the Bill. Once again the people have spoken out against the 1% determined to strip the rest of us of all our rights. Remember, this all began with the protests in Wisconsin. It was the first time demonstrators took to the streets in the US in a long time. That began the movement and with Ohio and Occupy Wall Street it is gaining momentum daily. The 99% will no longer be denied.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Facts vs. conservative lies about the financial crisis

Barry Ritholz gets is right in today's Washington Post on the conservative spin, citing for example NYC Mayor Bloomberg echoing the canard that it wasn't the banks' fault but those who irresponsibly bought homes they could not afford. And all because of government policies that allowed such behavior. Following are excerpts highlighting the real reasons for the problem and the lies conservatives hide behind by blaming, as usual, the government and the lower to middle class for their own heinous crimes.

"Fed Chair Alan Greenspan dropped rates to 1 percent — levels not seen for half a century — and kept them there for an unprecedentedly long period. This caused a spiral in anything priced in dollars (i.e., oil, gold) or credit (i.e., housing) or liquidity driven (i.e., stocks).

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Age of Asymmetry

From the opening of Timothy Morton's recent talk on The Age of Asymmetry:

"Modern life presents us with a choice. 1) The essence of life is elsewhere...evolution, the cosmic order [etc.].... 2) There is no essence.... Yet there is a third option. There is an essence and it is right here in the object...yet withdrawn.... Thinking past the meta-mode will bring us up to speed with the weirdness of things."

You're not in Kansas (kennilingus) anymore Dorothy (or Toto).

Some more excerpts:

Saturday, November 5, 2011

John Perkis on globalization

This video is enlightening. It highlights that poverty is created and maintained by the wealthy. The poor are needed to provide slave labor, and control of 3rd world countries is necessary to rape their resources, all to maintain the wealth of a few. And these few are what he calls the empire of the corporatocracy. He says: "Without a doubt this economic system is a failure." Please listen. Here's a brief bio of Perkins from wikipedia:

"John Perkins (b. January 28, 1945 in Hanover, New Hampshire) is an economist and author. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ecuador from 1968–1970 and this experience launched him in the world of economics and writing. His best known book is Confessions of an Economic Hit Man (2004), an insider's account of the exploitation or neo-colonization of Third World countries by what Perkins describes as a cabal of corporations, banks, and the United States government. His 2007 book, The Secret History of the American Empire, provides more evidence of the negative impact of global corporations on the economies and ecologies of poor countries, as well as offering suggestions for making corporations behave more like good citizens."

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Unthink, the anti-Facebook alternative

Have you seen this? Tired of having your privacy violated? (I know some of you actually enjoy that; see a therapist.) Check out the link for details and see you at the next wave in social networking. That is, if you're part of the burgeoning 3rd tier? Ha!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Open access is profitable too!

We've explored the recalcitrant attachment to capitalism of supposed 2nd-tier change agents, like here. And that real developmental progress is being made with a movement of which open access is a part, like here and here. With this in mind I like to direct you to Levi Bryant's blog post of the topic with a few snips below. This is an example of the kind of real leading edge socio-economic model transitioning away from capitalism, whereas those that cling to their intellectual property for a profit are miles behind this developmental advance. And if sales above are indicative, they'd actually make more money by giving it away!