Friday, November 30, 2018

The reason for California's success

As the 5th largest economy in the world, this stuff obviously works to scale.

Hartmann with Sanders on the Yemen war

They discuss the resolution that passed to cease support of the Saudi-led war that is killing children from starvation and disease as a result. They also make the key point that foreign policy cannot be based solely on profits from arms sales, that humanitarian values trump the money. Then then tackle climate chaos and the absolute and urgent necessity of transitioning to renewal energy before it's too late. Which, of course, will create a lot of new jobs for those previously in fossil fuels to fill. They also noted that this Monday night Sanders and others will be doing a live stream on climate which can be viewed on his FB page. More info on that can be found here.

Lindsey Stirley - Santa Baby

This is as close as I get to Christmas music. As usual, another great musical/dance production.

Colbert on Cohen revealing Dump's Russian business ties

You can always count on getting current, accurate political news from Colbert in an entertaining way.

Vigeland on the climate report and AOC's proposal

Continuing the last post, Vigeland lays out the facts of the economic impacts of climate chaos, and how they can be curtailed by AOC's Green New Deal.

Green New Deal the new Democratic litmus test

15 Dems have now signed on to Ocasio-Cortez's proposal, with likely more to come. Given the recent national climate assessment this action plan is needed now to curtail the scientific facts of the accelerating effects of fossil fuels on us and the planet. Even though it will unlikely pass with corporate Dem support it provides a key motivating campaign issue in the '20 election to primary those corporatists out of the Party. There really isn't much time left to turn this catastrophe around, so this must be a major issue hammered regularly and consistently now up to the next election.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

How democratic socialists define themselves

From the US Democratic Socialists Facebook page. Sounds pretty good to me.

How fascism works

Interview with Yale philosopher Jason Stanley. Sound at all familiar? He said:

"The key thing is that fascist politics is about identifying enemies, appealing to the in-group (usually the majority group), and smashing truth and replacing it with power. [...] It’s true that there are dangerous forms of extremism on both sides, but fascism tilts pretty heavily to the right in my view."

"In the past, fascist politics would focus on the dominant cultural group. The goal is to make them feel like victims, to make them feel like they’ve lost something and that the thing they’ve lost has been taken from them by a specific enemy, usually some minority out-group or some opposing nation. [...] The story is typically that a once-great society has been destroyed by liberalism or feminism or cultural Marxism or whatever, and you make the dominant group feel angry and resentful about the loss of their status and power. Almost every manifestation of fascism mirrors this general narrative."

How progressives got screwed in leadership vote

Cenk explains that Pelosi had to make concessions with corporate Dems, allowing them to vote with Repugs on corporate donor paybacks. Meanwhile the progressives got nothing for supporting her. This included sabotaging Barbara Lee for caucus chair by injecting Jeffries, claiming he too is progressive when his stated views show he is a lame incrementalist.

Progressives need to stand firm and make demands on leadership with threats of primary challenges. And given continued corporate Dem obstruction we already know they will continue this behavior so plan now for exactly those primary challenges. We need a progressive majority in '20.

Colbert on Dump's climate chaos denial

Thanks Colbert for helping me laugh at this f___king moron.

Sanders explains resolution to end Yemen war

Continuing this post, Sanders explains the resolution to end support of Saudi war on Yemen.

Top Dem Presidential candidates for 2020

According to WaPo. Senator Warren is ranked 1, Sanders 2. That would be the ideal 2020 dream team.

Progression of recent US Presidents

Although the last one must be called Presidunce.

Just one serious consequence of Dump

And this is just one of thousands. Remember this especially if you voted for him: He is poisoning you and your children.

Good one Chelsea

Do your duty and call out hate for what it is.

That is, if you don't want to be ignorant

Unfortunately too many prefer it and would never think of cracking a book, let alone think about thinking.

New free e-books from Frontiers in Science

See the selection here. Frontiers is a pioneer in open access science publishing. Of personal interest are:

What Is the Role for Effective Pedagogy In Contemporary Higher Education?

Reaching to Grasp Cognition: Analyzing Motor Behavior to Investigate Social Interactions

Neural Computation in Embodied Closed-Loop Systems for the Generation of Complex Behavior: From Biology to Technology

Cellular Therapies: Past, Present and Future

Software Architectures for Humanoid Robotics

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Senate votes to end Saudi policy support in Yemen

We've been backing the Saudi war in Yemen so today the Senate voted to end that backing. 14 Repugs joined a unanimous Dem coalition while the remaining Repugs voted to retain "the status quo of American intelligence, logistical and diplomatic assistance for the Saudi campaign." Does this mean the end of support voted to end arms sales to the Saudis? That was not in the article. And it also noted that after amendments the Bill will likely "not compel an end to the U.S. support for the effort by the Saudis and their partner the United Arab Emirates."

Geraldo shows humanity on Pox Views

And the Poxers just don't get it because it doesn't fit their false narrative of painting these women and children as a violent, invading hoard.

Masturbation is the new meditation

Female liberation. I can see why this is so dangerous to conservative repression and so welcome by progressive embodied spirituality.

Moore: Dump was played by GM

He astutely notes that GM took their tax break and told Dump and the US to go f___ itself. Dump and his voters were idiots to believe a giant corp like GM gave one shit about them. Will they learn from GM firing 15,000 workers and shutting down US plants? One can only hope.

Stewart interviews Colbert

Colbert flips the script and is the guest on his own show. Part 2 of the interview is here.

Shchiff updates the Russia investigation

And it is damning to the Dumpsters. He connects the dots which include Manafort lying to Mueller and providing a back door channel to Dump on what's up with the investigation. Just another count of Dump obstructing justice to be added to his growing list of crimes. I can't wait for Schiff to head the House Intelligence Committee and issue subpoenas to get to the bottom of this.

Reich: The process of issuing Dump a subpoena

Good historical journey on the process involved, which could end up in the Supreme Corp. It happened to Nixon and the SC ruled in favor of the subpoena.

Dems support punishing those who boycott Israel

And with serious punishment which "would make it a felony for Americans to support the international boycott against Israel, commonly known as BDS. Anyone guilty of violating the prohibitions will face a minimum civil penalty of $250,000 and a maximum criminal penalty of $1 million and 20 years in prison." And this from Dems who typically support free speech. Why? AIPAC, the corporate Dems NRA.

States lead the way to renewable energy

This article discusses how even though progressive Dems won a majority in the House, and even if they pass national legislation on renewable energy, it will get nowhere due to regressives in the Senate and Blight House. On the other hand, the States are making considerable progress. I just attended a presentation last night on New Mexico's transition goals to 100% renewable energy by 2050. And since Dems now control all branches of State government we will proceed to do it. And as always, California leads the way.

The Dem Party backstory

Bottom line of this story: We the people must hold Dem reps feet to the fire to implement our agenda. And the CPC members must stand firm and not cave to Pelosi's half measures. That too is our job. And btw, primary Pelosi and Hoyer.

What railing against PC really means

In a nutshell.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

And why does McConnell refuse to protect Mueller?

Although this report said it was $2.5 million. As usual with Repugnantans, it's all about money. Although it's also possible McConnell is also implicated in the Mueller investigation. We'll see.

Blight House blocks CIA Director briefing Senate on Khashoggi murder

Now why would they want to do that? It can't be for any valid reason. More to come.

Did Mueller mastermind the Manafort strategy?

This article thinks so. Palmer thinks Mueller waited until after Dump submitted his written responses before breaking Manafort's plea deal because those written questions also asked about Manafort's meeting with Assange during the campaign. Mueller has evidence to that effect and wanted to see how Dump lied about it before playing that hand. We'll see.

MSNBC refused to cover Blight House press briefing

This is exactly the right strategy to deal with the incessant lies that come out of those briefings. MSNBC also refused to air Dump's live comments on immigration. Let's hope most of the media follows suit and stops giving any airtime to the Liar in Chief.

Doesn't matter has tremendous impact

Contrary to the conclusion below, the attitude of "it doesn't matter," like for example in climate change, makes a great deal of difference since nothing is done about it while it continues to get worse by the hour.

McKibben on Ocasio Cortez

And the Green New Deal, and how it is a positive sign going forward that this must be the key issue in all political discussion going forward. And bottom line to that discussion is the requirement that legislators refuse to accept any fossil fuel money.

Mueller said Manafort lied to him so plea deal off

This video explores the implications of Manafort lying to  Mueller. Will any testimony Manafort gave be credible now given this revelation? How will it affect the investigation more generally, since it seemed Manafort's testimony would be key against the Dumpsters?

Naomi Klein on the Green New Deal

Klein is inspired by Ocasio-Cortez and the new progressives in Congress. It's 2020 deadline makes it a key issue in that election, which it needs to be. While it is obvious that Pelosi and the corporate Dems will thwart this new deal, progressives must keep up the fight and force the issue in the '20 elections, again forcing out the dinosaur Dems in the primaries. And we the people must keep turning up the heat on the corporate Dems and supporting the progressives so that even more of them take over the Party in the next election.

Monday, November 26, 2018

Repugnantan Jesus

The latest episode produced by fake Christians.

Dump's nativity scene

Merry Christmas Dumpsters. May God bless your lost souls.

For the love of money

Some seriously sick shit.

GM to lay off 15,000 workers

Remember when Dump promised this wouldn't happen? It's happening and it's Dump's and the Repugnantan's fault with their disastrous tax scam, as it failed to require companies to keep their production in the US and they are not.

Here is Sanders analysis:

"This year, General Motors received a $514 million tax break as a result of Trump’s tax giveaway to the wealthy. But instead of using that money to raise wages, increase benefits or add more jobs it is doing the exact opposite. Today, GM announced that it would be laying off nearly 15,000 workers and close plants in Michigan, Ohio and Maryland to “increase the long-term profit and cash generation" of the company. That is outrageous. Let’s be clear. GM is not a poor company. It is not going broke. So far this year, GM has made a profit of $6 billion and had enough money to spend $100 million on stock buybacks to enrich its wealthy shareholders. Last year, it gave its CEO a $22 million compensation package – 295 times more than the average GM worker makes. Under Trump, it has also received $600 million in lucrative federal contracts. Government contracts should be going to companies that create jobs in America, not to businesses that are eliminating them. The corporate greed of General Motors is destroying the social fabric of America."


Unfortunately due to the presenter's accent in this video it is difficult to understand his English. Also see this link for more. The bottom line: design global, manufacture local.

Sanders on climate change and Yemen

In yesterday's Face the Nation interview. First up the US climate assessment needs to be taken seriously and we need to quickly transition to renewable energy, which will create new jobs in addition to ameliorating the damage being done by fossil fuels. And of course we need to stop weapon sales to Saudi Arabia, which is using them to kill millions of innocents in Yemen via collateral starvation. It's not just an American journalist whose life was sacrificed to make money on weapons. He concludes with the necessity for an overall bold progressive agenda.

Conservative illogic on climate change

Good metaphor.

Word of the year: Misinformation

From See this link for a thorough explanation, which included a video. Here is just the introduction to the topic:

"The rampant spread of misinformation poses new challenges for navigating life in 2018. As a dictionary, we believe understanding the concept is vital to identifying misinformation in the wild, and ultimately curbing its impact.

"But what does misinformation mean? defines it as “false information that is spread, regardless of whether there is intent to mislead.” The recent explosion of misinformation and the growing vocabulary we use to understand it have come up again and again in the work of our lexicographers.

"Over the last couple of years, has been defining words and updating terms related to the evolving understanding of misinformation including disinformation, echo chamber, confirmation bias, filter bubble, conspiracy theory, fake news, post-fact, post-truth, homophily, influencer, and gatekeeper."

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Freedom for whom?

Keep this in mind when you hear Repugs say that magic word. There is no freedom for the rest of us in that word.

Who are the real freeloaders?

Yet they are so good at fooling ignoramuses that it's poor people.

World Quality of Life Rankings

From US News and World Report. See the link for methodology and explanations. This is not to put down the US but for the US to learn how they can improve quality of life for everyone. To date that doesn't seem to be on the US list, but rather how to only improve the quality of life for the top 1%. Let's get a progressive majority in the Senate in '20, retain the progressive majority in the House, and get a progressive President. Then we'll see the US move up the list.

Why Laissez-Faire Economics Always Fails

Article by Eric Liu and Nick Hanauer in Evonomics:

"Money accumulation by the rich is not the same as wealth creation by a society. If we are serious about creating wealth, our focus should not be on taking care of the rich so that their money trickles down; it should be on making sure everyone has a fair chance—in education, health, social capital, access to financial capital— to create new information and ideas." 

Ocasio Cortez smackdown

Once again she nails her critics for what they are.

Betty Boop - The old man and the mountain

Another oldie but goodie.

Post office ad

They are fighting back against privatization. Let your Reps know you support the PO and to keep greedy corporate hands off of it.

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Lady Gaga - Always Remember Us This Way

This movie is still impacting me. Oscar time?

The Empathic Civilization

An oldie but goodie from the archive, a 10-minute summary of the human race.

Betty Boop

I'm old enough to remember this.

Capitalism's prime directive

And destroy the planet, and we the people, in the process. And of course blinded by greed they can't see they are cutting off the limb they are sitting on.

Zizek: Democracy and capitalism are destined to split up

From the P2P Foundation:

"Slavoj , one of the most famous philosophers of the radical left, gives here an interpretation of why progressive movements that were formed in the 19th and 20th century, keep failing, but also intimates that the big issues of the day, the big threats to the survival of humanity, are today essentially problems of the commons. So we recommend this video as an indication of the renewal of emancipatory thinking in the direction of the commons."

"Philosopher Slavoj Žižek argues that our current brand of global capitalism is quickly outgrowing democracy and that a divorce between the two is inevitable. This leads to an array of social and geopolitical concerns regarding the public commons. These problems include but are not limited to ecology, biogenetics, finance, neo-apartheid, crisis management, intellectual property rights, and personal freedom. Žižek touches on all these topics and more in this epic delivery of political and social theory."

Climate scientist: Dump "is a dangerous clown"

True that. Of course based on scientific fact, something alien to Dump and his Dumpsters.

Dr. Michael Mann, professor of atmospheric science at Pennsylvania State University, told Huffington Post “[the tweet] demonstrates once again that Donald Trump is not an individual to be taken seriously on any topic, let alone matters as serious as climate change. He is a clown — a dangerous clown. [...] It is disturbing to see the titular head of our nation misinforming the public about the greatest threat we face—the threat of catastrophic climate change impacts. Not only has Trump sought to dismantle the environmental protections put in place by previous administrations, he has also sought to lower the level of discourse by making nonsensical public comments that are untruthful factually, and deliberately conflate normal day-to-day weather fluctuations with climate change. It is shameful, irresponsible and most unbecoming of someone who would call himself President of the United States."

Sanders 10-point plan for Democrats

Just to bullet points follow. See the link for details. If this last election taught us anything it is that this is the agenda Dems must implement if they're going to listen to we the people.

Increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour and indexing it to median wage growth thereafter.

A path toward Medicare-for-all.

Bold action to combat climate change.

Fixing our broken criminal-justice system.

Comprehensive immigration reform.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Ocasio Cortez supports Pelosi

For Speaker, as long as Pelosi supports progressive policies. She disagrees with Pelosi on some issues like the pay as you go rule but reiterated that Pelosi is the best alternative at this point.

NASA scientists unanimous on human-caused climate change

They all agree about this, no skepticism. This is a science issue, not a political one. Whether we accept the science and what we do or don't do about it are political issues.

4th National Climate Assessment

Katharine Hayhoe's FB post on the report is below. This is dire stuff that demands we take aggressive climate action now. We no longer have the luxury of being incremental about it. Got that Pelosi?

"The Fourth National Climate Assessment (volume 2, on impacts and regions) was just released today at 2pm. It does an outstanding job of explaining how climate is changing in every part of the U.S., what that means for people and places, and how we need to prepare. What's the bottom line?

"First, climate change creates new risks and exacerbates existing vulnerabilities in communities across the U.S. Second, without substantial and sustained global mitigation and regional adaptation efforts, climate change will impede the rate of economic growth over this century. Third, communities, governments, and businesses are working to reduce risks from and costs associated with climate change by taking action to lower greenhouse gas emissions and implement adaptation strategies. But fourth, this is not enough.

"While mitigation and adaptation efforts have expanded substantially in the last four years, they do not yet approach the scale considered necessary to avoid substantial damages to the economy, environment, and human health over the coming decades."

Stone associate Corsi in plea deal with Mueller

Breaking news. Corsi is suspected of passing on the Wikileaks Russian hacked emails to Stone and hence to Dump and company. With the plea deal Corsi might spill these devastating beans. More to come.

Hartmann on the corporate Dem challenge to Pelosi

He points out that it's the corporate Dems who are against every progressive program that are trying to oust Pelosi. Granted Pelosi is not on board with all of the progressive agenda either, but her opponents are outright corporatists that want no part of that agenda. Let's not cut off our progressive nose here for some misguided sense of purity. We've been there before and we lose in so doing.

Ocasio Cortez on the Pelosi dilemma

She discusses the move to oust Pelosi as Speaker as coming from Pelosi's right. They have no progressive vision of how to move forward and likely quite the contrary. So unless the progressives can come up with a legitimate challenge, which to date they have not and doesn't seem likely, Pelosi is far better than the alternative. That is, keep Pelosi but fight the pay as you go and supermajority tax hike rules.

Ocasio Cortez the catalyst for US discussion on climate chaos

She's the impetus that is getting it going. This video shows how she's not only adding to the chorus but inspiring new and veteran participants.

Who to thank for your food

Thank the right Jesus that actually brought the food to your table.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Even the turkey is cooperating

Seems everyone is going to testify against Dump.

US ranked worst healthcare in developed world

According to The Commonwealth Fund. "In addition to ranking last or close to last in access, administrative efficiency, equity and health care outcomes, the U.S. was found to spend the most money on health care." Great job Dump and Repugs! You got exactly what you were paid to achieve: The healthcare companies love you! The rest of us not so much.

Michael Moore on the election

The States that gave Dump the Presiduncy--Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania--all went blue. We are winning back some of that blue collar, rust belt demographic that finally realize that Dump lied to them. Also because that demo now believes those progressive Dems who ran on values and polices that actually support the workers. Even voters in conservative districts elected progressives this time around because we stood strong for the American people, so we need to keep that up for the next election if we want to win that one too. Another factor was having ballot proposals that get out the vote, like Michigan's pot legalization and outlawing gerrymandering. More of those for the next election too.

Shep Smith on Dump supporting murder of US journalist

Yes, this is from one of the few sane and truthful voices on Pox Views.

King interviews Maher

In this clip they cover a lot of ground including the upcoming '20 election.

Colbert on Thanksgiving

And now for some lighter Thanksgiving thoughts.

Happy Thanksgiving

At the heart of America's discovery. And we're thankful for that?

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Hartmann and Pocan on the idiotic Pelosi rule

Continuing this post, they discuss that insidious rule that would require 60% of Democrats to approve of any legislation that raises taxes on the bottom 80%. It was a Republican rule that some think must be maintained but we the people need to contact Pelosi and our reps to tell them to scrap this stupid rule. Otherwise it could very well sabotage any progressive reform.

Btw, you can see the proposed rule on p. 5 of this document, called "protect the middle class from tax increases." It's real name should be "protect the corporate Dems from passing any progressive reforms."

The pattern theory of self

Continuing this post, here are a couple of quotes from two of Gallagher's contributions in that issue. From his article on decentering the brain:

"In brief, the pattern theory of self (PTS) argues that a self is constituted as a pattern or dynamical Gestalt comprised of a sufficient number of characteristic factors, including embodied, experiential, affective, behavioral, intersubjective, psychological/cognitive, reflective, narrative, extended and normative factors. It is important to note that this is not an additive list of factors; rather these components or aspects are dynamically interrelated in a pattern or Gestalt arrangement (Gallagher & Daly 2018). Accordingly, a change in one element, above a certain threshold, will lead, via dynamical interactions, to changes in others."

From his response to peer reviews:

"The various elements of the self-pattern are not, as Wykretowicz (§3) suggests, organized on different levels around a minimal core. As a dynamical gestalt the pattern is not characterized by different levels, but by an integration via dynamical relations (Gallagher & daly 2018). In effect, the unity of the self just is the coherency of the pattern held together in its dynamical relations" (3). 

Pox Views on 2 email scandals

Playing nice is not an option

I'm in full agreement with this piece, subtitled "It's time to stand up for something." That something is democracy. There is no playing nice with fascism and oligarchy, which is exactly what Dump and the Repugs are all about. They must be fought and defeated. It's time to take a stand and fight for it, not compromise with the destruction of decency and humanity. Anything short of that has proven time and again that Dems lose and as a consequence, so do we the people.

Coward Dump won't visit troops in war zones

Bottom line, he's a coward. As one aide said citing conversations with the Presidunce: "He’s never been interested in going. He’s afraid of those situations. He’s afraid people want to kill him." Colbert elaborates.

Ocasio-Cortez's statement of values

You know, American values. Democratic values. Human values. Real values.

Ireland bans fracking

They join France, Germany and Bulgaria in banning this ecocidal form of extraction which poses "significant threats to the air, water and the health and safety of individuals and communities." It's refreshing that at least some countries are waking up to the necessity of a needed shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy if we and the planet are to survive.

Dump defends Saudi murder of American journalist

Chait rips Dump a new one in this piece. Dump outright lies that no one knows what happened with the CIA released a report on exactly what happened at the Crown Prince's direction. In any case, for Dump his murder and dismemberment are just fine as long as we can profit from it. Meanwhile Germany has ended arms sales to the Saudis over this fiasco. Please 2020 election hurry before our country is destroyed beyond repair. Democracy Now elaborates.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Lindsey Stirling - You're a Mean One Mr. Grinch

Featuring Sabrina Carpenter.

Hartmann w/Abramson on his book re: Dump treason

They discuss Abramson's new book assiduously documenting Dump's dealings with Russia over decades and concludes treason.

Dump really is this stupid

TYT explores Dump's idiotic comments about raking forests in Finland.

Chris Wallace: Thanksgiving moderating tips

Funny clip he does for Colbert.

Colbert on Dump's latest war hero attack

This coming from draft dodger dipshit Bone Spurs.

The peerless neo-Piagetians

Excerpt from this Zak Stein statement:

"My basic argument is that, because of their comprehensiveness and explanatory power, Neo-Piagetian approaches transcend but include approaches that focus on ego-development. I also suggest that Neo-Piagetian approaches are less susceptible to misuse as quasi-religious meaning making tools for ranking the worth of individuals."

"Many developmentalists engage in assessment practices and offer frameworks that mystify our self-understandings and render us unable to define for ourselves our own sense of self-worth. We become dependent on an expert to tell us if we are a turquoise, autonomous, integrated, construct-aware, 2nd-tier, magician, alchemist, or spiral wizard. Are you among these chosen saviors, or are you merely a conventional, formal operating, conformist, expert, achiever, or individualist? Just note the normative loading of the names of the levels themselves. This is a blurring of the lines between psychology and religion—a pseudoscientific replacement of our languages of self-understanding and self-evaluation. The Neo-Piagetains are about dismantling this cult of psychological self-aggrandizement and they stand against the giving over to experts of the means by which one evaluates self worth."

What will replace outdated economic thinking?

From this piece:

"Political elites and their corporate brethren are running out of ideas for how to reconcile the deep contradictions of 'democratic capitalism' as it now exists. Even social democrats and liberals, the traditional foes of free-market dogma, seem locked into an archaic worldview and set of political strategies that makes their advocacy sound tinny. Their familiar progress-narrative—that economic growth, augmented by government interventions and redistribution, can in fact work and make society more stable and fair—is no longer persuasive.

"Below, I argue that the commons paradigm offers a refreshing and practical lens for re-imagining politics, governance and law. The commons, briefly put, is about self-organized social systems for managing shared wealth. Far from a 'tragedy,' the commons as a system for mutualizing responsibilities and benefits is highly generative. It can be seen in the successful self-management of forests, farmland, and water, and in open source software communities, open-access scholarly journals, and “cosmo-local” design and manufacturing systems."

Good Thanksgiving question

Maybe Americans like to eat shit? A significant portion will eat anything that comes out of Dump's mouth. Same difference.

Monday, November 19, 2018

14,000 immigrant kids still locked up

Let's not forget this heinous story, which is about sick bastards wanting immigrants and their children to suffer. It's not just inhumane but inhuman. That's correct, those that enjoy inflicting this kind of suffering lost the right to be called human. So they have to be voted out of office ASAP to restore humanity to our government.

The brain's 7-D sandcastles

From this article.

"He and his colleagues of the Blue Brain Project at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL) have been using algebraic topology, a field of mathematics used to characterise higher-dimensional shapes, to explore the workings of the brain. What they have found beggars belief. As our brains think, learn and remember, they create elaborate but ephemeral structures in at least seven mathematical dimensions, and possibly many more. What’s more, these transient structures, which appear and disappear like sandcastles on a beach, could help us understand how the brain creates our thoughts and feelings. They might even unravel the greatest mystery of them all: consciousness."

Pelosi wants to work with Dump and Repugnantans?

Seriously? We're in a literal battle of survival of democracy against fascism and she wants to compromise with fascists? Medhi Hasan has it right:

"She and her party have an obligation, above all else, to defeat fascism — and you can’t defeat fascism by meeting it in the middle. The correct response to a white nationalist in the White House isn’t to offer him a vague deal on infrastructure. It’s to fight and, yes, to resist him at every turn; to loudly and relentlessly call out his rhetoric and behavior as abnormal and un-American."

Neuroscience on intentional breathing

From this piece:

"This recent study finally answers these questions by showing that volitionally controlling our respiration, even merely focusing on one’s breathing, yield additional access and synchrony between brain areas. This understanding may lead to greater control, focus, calmness, and emotional control."

Sanders announces national town hall on climate change

From his FB post. Also see this story for more details.

"On Monday, Dec. 3 at 7 p.m. we will be holding a national town hall on something that does not get nearly enough attention in the mainstream media. And that is the issue of climate change.

"The reason we are having this town hall is pretty simple. Unless we take bold and drastic action to address climate change and transform our energy system away from fossil fuels to renewable sources of energy, I fear very much that the world we leave for our kids and grandkids will be in much worse shape than the world we live in today.

"Let’s go forward to transform our energy system away from fossil fuels, create millions of jobs in the process and leave behind a planet that is livable for our children and grandchildren. I hope you will tune in and join us for this very important discussion."

Monbiot: Why we need the commons

Smokey responds to Dump

Someone had to tell him the truth because Repugnantan enablers sure as hell won't.

Ocasio-Cortez backs progressives to primary incumbent Dems

This is exactly who and what we need in Congress. She did so in a conference call with Justice Democrats, who supported her campaign. The following includes Pelosi:

"Ocasio-Cortez and leaders of Justice Democrats say they are driven by a conviction that most current Democratic members of Congress are not up to the task of enacting the radical solutions to address the country’s ― and the planet’s ― most pressing problems. The most urgent of those crises, they said, include climate change, widening economic inequality and persistent racial injustice. [...] 'If we don’t have folks who are mission-focused, and laser-focused on solving these gigantic problems, we just aren’t going to get them solved in time.'"

Note she is getting opposition from corporate Dems, but "the investigative news site Sludge subsequently reported that each of the Democrats quoted as criticizing Ocasio-Cortez had received massive donations during the 2018 campaign cycle from fossil-fuel industry and electric utility political action committees and employees."

OC has not yet joined the leaders of the progressive caucus in endorsing Pelosi.

Dumpster statistics

Can't argue with the math.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Non-union v. union shops

Take your pick.

Repugnantan hypocrisy on impeachment

No surprise here, showing how top Repugs think it's a fine idea when it's a Dem but not for Dump.

Corporate Dem response to progressive wins

Progressives fighting for financial regulation did far better than those corporate Dems fighting to deregulate Wall Street. Also noted was that the way to taint such progressive freshmen toward Wall Street was to put them on the House Financial Services Committee. As we've seen in this post that's exactly Pelosi's strategy, while at the same time creating rules to prevent progressives from making any headway on sensible financial regulation. The progressive victories show that we the people want to reign in the Big Banks, but instead of following our wishes the corporate Dems still plot to thwart our agenda in order to further pad their coffers with corrupt money.

SNL: RBG rap

Rapping about our national treasure RBG.

SNL: Laura Ingraham parody

Kate McKinnon plays Ingraham in a barely exaggerated spoof.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

But then Pelosi does this

On the other hand, other progressives are highly upset with Pelosi's proposal that would effectively kneecap the very programs that progressives campaigned and won on, like "Medicare for All, free public college, a federal jobs program, and other ambitious left-wing policies by dramatically restricting the party's ability to raise revenue and effectively handing Republicans the power to block progressive legislation." Can she be trusted?

Some progressives back Pelosi as Speaker

In exchange for more power. Some members of the House Progressive Caucus met with Pelosi and she agreed that they "would have more seats on powerful committees and more influence over legislation." That included proportional representation on the A Committees. Thereafter MoveOn and Indivisible supported Pelosi for Speaker. In light of this I'll reconsider my opposition to here.

The transition we need

Does Mueller have several sealed indictments in waiting?

This article suggests as much. We do know there are more than 3 dozen of said sealed indictments on the DC Circuit docket since the beginning of 2018. 14 were added since late August. Mueller knew Sessions would be fired and replaced with a Dump lackey so did he lock in these indictments before that, thereby preventing interference from Sessions replacement? The article suggests it is likely.

Colbert interviews Sotomayor

One of her key messages is that her success in life comes from reading books. Quite the contrast from the Graven Image who will not be named.

Colbert: The new faces of Congress

So how is it that the new Dem faces are diverse and the new Repug faces are like the old ones, mostly old white men? What can we reasonable infer from this? He also highlights one of those diverse Dems leading the way, Ocasio-Cortez.

Maher's monologue

Thanks for the laughs buddy. He'll be taking a 2-month brake now.

Maher: Don't talk politics

With your family and everyday friends and associates. It's bound to happen that there are differences of political affiliation. And talking about those differences is not going to change each other but to the contrary is more likely to create animosity. So just don't go there.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Ocasio-Cortez is terrifying Pox Views

OC is everything they fear most: A strong, dedicated fighter for democracy and the true American way supported by a majority of the American people. What a nightmare!

Silverman gives thanks for Dump

Not to him, but for the fact that his incessant insanity has motivated millions of us to action against him and for a return to human decency. She lists how this was reflected in the last election, which will hopefully carry over to the '20 election.

Lane on a scientific spiritualism

In this essay Lane responds to an article "beyond materialism." As to the science of consciousness, that's why I like the work of Evan Thompson for one. In this Integral World essay I noted that he sees what is traditionally called transcendental witness consciousness as simply our pre-personal lived body. He also noted that "to date there is no physical evidence that can detect a pure awareness devoid of a physical body."

Federalist Society rebukes Dump

Yep, that right wing bastion even thinks Dump is a travesty. See their comments here. An excerpt:

"Conservative lawyers are not doing enough to protect constitutional principles that are being undermined by the statements and actions of this president. [...] We believe in the rule of law, the power of truth, the independence of the criminal justice system, the imperative of individual rights and the necessity of civil discourse. We believe these principles apply regardless of the party or persons in power."

Meditation in the digital age

Don't forget to delete that insidious thumbnail cache too, all those stored unconscious images.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Only 23% of Dems want leader Pelosi

Continuing the last post, and according to this recent poll. 35% want someone else and 41% don't give a shit. Only 7 of the 53 new Dems say they vote for her. We do not want her! She is a throwback dinosaur who will thwart the most important issue of our time, a literal life and death issue: Strong legislation to curtail climate chaos and quickly transition to renewable energy. And that is a direct result of her and the Party's continuing acceptance of fossil fuel money.

Pelosi as Speaker again?

No. I was just listening to callers to Hartmann's show discussing whether Pelosi should be the new Speaker of the House. The number 1 reason for it was her effectiveness. But effective at what? Taking corporate money and raising more of it for the Party. Slow walking financial reform and climate legislation? We don't need that sort of effectiveness. Hence OC joining in the Pelosi office demonstration over climate legislation.

So yes, we need a Speaker with experience to get things done and curry votes. But that Speaker also needs to promote the new ideas of the progressive reps that we voted for this last election. It's time for a progressive wave, meaning a people's wave, in the House. And the next Speaker needs to not just speak for it but to fight for enacting it.

Colbert on Whitaker's history

And this guy is the acting top cop of the US? Very scary and fascist shit to have this criminal destroying what's left of the law.

Silverman on prom Nazis

The kids who gave the Nazi salute is not a joke and it's not funny: It's hate.

The problem with capitalism

From this piece. Hence the rise of the collaborative commons.

"Let’s start at zero: capitalism isn’t the platonic ideal of self-correcting competition — that’s a fantasy, a fairy tale. This is the self-evident reality of capitalism — monopolies extracting wealth. How much? Well, first, no amount of wealth will ever be enough — not even the most wealth in human history is. There is no boundary condition, no point of satiation, which means there is also no line of conscience or morality."

Decentered cognition

New stuff from the new Constructivist Foundations with the theme of decentered cognition. E.g.:

"Such considerations motivate the need to re-think our understanding of how the brain itself works. They suggest that the best explanation of brain function may be found in the mixed vocabularies of embodied and situated cognition, developmental psychology, ecological psychology, dynamic systems theory, applied linguistics, the theory of affordances and material engagement, rather than the narrow vocabulary of computational neuroscience."

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Ocasio-Cortez joins protest at Pelosi's office

To encourage Pelosi to promote the Green New Deal: Building a renewable energy infrastructure while rejecting fossil fuel money. Pelosi was even forced to respond with a positive statement. Get used to it Congress: Progressive Dems are here to stay. And this is just the beginning of OC's long political career that just might end up at the Presidency some day.

Ayn Rand's unpublished last book

Never before released until now, where she tells us how she really feels. Pretty standard Repugnantan fare these days.

Green New Deal

Will the Dem Party get behind it? Motivate them with this petition. Get on board or get out of the way.

1. Champion a Green New Deal that would create millions of good jobs to transform society over the next decade to stop climate change. This means creating a committee tasked specifically to write policy on creating jobs and moving our country off fossil fuels over the designated 12 years that the IPCC has given us. Let’s protect the lives of all working people -- black, brown, and white -- from the ravages of disaster and pollution.

2. Mandate that any Democrat in leadership must take the No Fossil Fuel Money pledge and reject campaign contributions from fossil fuel executives and lobbyists and prioritize the health of people and planet over industry profits. Oil and gas executives profit off a business model that's incompatible with the future of human civilization. It's time for the Democratic Party to reject their influence wholesale.

Is this really an unsolvable conundrum?

Only if you're paid off by the gun lobby. Otherwise it is perfect common sense: Compare gun laws.

Castles Made of Sand

I was reminded of this classic today.

Putin/Dump relationship

Master and servant.

Schmidt: Is Dump above the law?

The Supreme Corp may have to rule on this question. If they rule that he is then we are seeing the end of the rule of law, meaning the end of our democracy and the installment of fascist dictatorship.

Sanders: The future belongs to progressives

This is what we the people want, not corporate Dem centrism. The Party needs to accept this fact and either progress or get out of the way. Bernie Sanders on the incoming freshman class:

"Many of these folks are not just women, not just people of color, who campaigned on Medicare for All, raising the minimum wage to 15 bucks, campaigned on making public colleges and universities tuition-free, on undoing Trump's tax breaks for billionaires. I think the Washington Post is going to be very surprised at who shows up on the first day of Congress and gets sworn in. The political establishment notwithstanding, the future belongs to progressives."

My FB plea to Hillary Clinton

Can be found on her FB feed here commenting on the Dem mid-term wins.  Please everyone who agrees also comment on this thread to let her know we do not want her.

"And they are winning because they are running of progressive values and policies. To prevent this progress from being destroyed, please DO NOT run for President again. We the people want progressive policy and we know you will not give it to us. And to the contrary, you will once again take down the above sort of victories down ticket when the same demo votes against you yet again. Stay out for the country's sake and forget your own personal ambition to be President."

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Juan Pablo and Cheryl

On DWTS last night. They scored a perfect 30 out of 30. Looks like Cheryl might have another championship mirror ball. This is the only kind of Argentine Tango (AT) I can appreciate: Performed by those trained to excellence. Regular social AT is the most boring dance imaginable.

Dumpster psych evaluation

See this article for the details by a group of psychologists and neuroscientists. Just a few of the bullet points follow. Sound about right?

The Fear-Factor: Conservatives Are More Sensitive to Threat
Relative Deprivation — A Misguided Sense of Entitlement
Lack of Exposure to Dissimilar Others
Authoritarian Personality Syndrome
Racism and Bigotry  

Will Clinton run again?

Please no. Her candidacy gave us Dump because she turned off so many progressive votes. Even more significantly she turned off blue collar voters in the traditionally blue rust belt because they rightly didn't believe she had their best interests. And now there's indications she might run yet again? No, that would be the death knell of the Dem Party at a time when so many progressives have won not only their primaries but their mid-term races.

Nance: Dump engaged in criminal conspiracy

And of course he's absolutely right. And he should be so charged in the Russia investigation. Nance thinks Mueller already has all his indictments sealed and ready to go so even if he's fired they can't be stopped.

Who is Matt Whitaker?

A political hack, an idiot and guilty of fraud. Perfect for the lead US cop in Dump's extended crime family, given his very appointment is itself a crime.

Meyers: Dump lies about voter fraud

No surprise, since he lies about everything. Meyers takes a closer look at the Florida recount and his lies that there is voter fraud when there is no evidence of it whatsoever. Meanwhile Dump and his Dumpsters are all criminals, of which there is plenty of evidence.

Colbert on the Florida recount

And Dump's imbecilic inability to understand democracy.

On multi-paradigms and materialism

As to the charge of materialism, note the following from Philosophy in the Flesh, Chapter Chapter 7, where they discuss phenomenology, functionalism and materialism. And that their type of embodied realism does not limit explanation to only one of those domains but embraces all of them while each having different validity criteria for their domains.

They also discuss eliminativism, which posits that the only real things are physical. Continuing the above, they do admit to being physicalists in that there is a physical basis for such non-physical entities like phonemes and verbs. But they do not accept that physical materialism is the only arbiter of reality.

"We have seen that reality and truth occur relative to our understanding at many levels and from many perspectives. This is inconsistent with the classical eliminativist program in the philosophy of science, which asserts that the only realities and the only truths are at the "lowest level," here the neural level, that is, the level of neurochemistry and cellular physiology."

The bottom line is that like Wilber they accept there are different domains of investigation and that there are levels of understanding within those domains. And that includes the material realm explored by physics, but taking account of other domains and levels is not reduced solely to that domain. Unlike Wilber they don't accept that there is any one domain or level (like consciousness) that is the final arbiter or source of all the others.

Also check out Stein's Integral Review article here, where he lays out his interpretation of the tenets of metamodernism. Given the above this one seems in agreement: