• What is freedom?
    Your thoughts remind me of the Tao Te Ching. Also, Zen.Amity

    Yeah, my mind has been infected since almost forever

    Creativity. Its source and process seem to involve a letting go.Amity

    Yes indeed, the source is the process of letting go. The idea of freedom becomes confused and confusing because it is a buzz-word that everyone wants to claim, but to the extent that anyone succeeds in claiming it, they are succeeding in enslaving freedom itself. Whatever one holds onto becomes a tether, even the idea of freedom: "Therefore the sage lets go of that, and chooses this."

    Anyone who knows anything about Taoist or Zen practice though will not mistake this for a descent into mere chaos. On the contrary, the discipline is very austere, the responsibilities are great. Likewise, it takes a really disciplined and masterful musician to play free jazz.

  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    Kevin TrenberthAgree-to-Disagree

    Chris Hipkins and Chris Luxon were both asked about climate change at the end of the leaders' debate this week, and neither response was helpful.

    Both talked about cutting emissions – and in a personal capacity, recycling – but neither addressed the most important issue staring us in the face, and that is recognising that climate change is here, it is accelerating and getting worse, and it has consequences. We must adapt to the changes, plan for them and build resilience, and we need to do so urgently.
    — Trenberth et al.

    Since the late 1800s, global average surface temperatures have increased by about 1.1℃, driven by human activities, most notably the burning of fossil fuels which adds greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide and methane) to the atmosphere.

    As the atmosphere warms, it can hold more moisture in the form of water vapour, which is also a greenhouse gas. This in turn amplifies the warming caused by our emissions of other greenhouse gases.

    Some people mistakenly believe water vapour is a driver of Earth’s current warming. But as I explain below, water vapour is part of Earth’s hydrological cycle and plays an important role in the natural greenhouse effect. Its rise is a consequence of the atmospheric warming caused by our emissions arising especially from burning fossil fuels.
    — Trenberth

    To address climate change threats in New Zealand will require more than mobilising private investment with a focus on renewable energy. It will need a comprehensive and collaborative approach that acknowledges dependencies on shipping and air travel, which continue to depend on fossil fuels.

    Here are ten broad areas that must be considered when tackling the specific and sometimes unique challenges New Zealand faces in the years ahead.
    — Trenberth

    And the ten point plan that follows is quite radical, sensible and doable without waiting for the magic bullet that is only decades away.
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    Judith Curry is a genuine climate scientist.Agree-to-Disagree

    But in this case, of course, Do not follow the money.
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)

    Pipe dream. a literal pipe dream. Two of them in fact. Hydrogen and fusion. Instead of taking action, fantasise about the magic bullet we will have in ten or twenty years. Maybe.

    Instead of

    Agriculture reform.
    transport system reorganisation
    building redesign
    development of green energy sources and infrastructure including mass storage, using already available technology.
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    But , can you not see the graphs going up? That means things are getting better, because nearer to God.
  • What is freedom?
    Kierkegaard argues that the personal is fundamentally different from other categories to the point where psychology, as the attempt to generally understand the human condition, must give way to the theological. But his view is sharply at odds with a Stoicism that carefully marks out the borders between the regions. He clearly expects to change what is possible in the world.Paine

    Thanks for that. I think I need to read some Kierkegaard. No one seems to argue with him - perhaps it's the intimidating Big Guy standing at his shoulder. It seems obvious that people are not in general single-minded, and so there is a sense in which that freedom one seeks is the freedom from mental conflict (as illustrated by @petrichor above).

    "... expects to change what is possible in the world." This! Evolution does it very slowly and laboriously The disciplined imagination of the architect or the engineer does it in almost no time. If there is a technical meaning to freedom, it must I think be that the future is underdetermined by the past. There is wriggle room. And the wriggle room seems to grow, as life complexifies - like a final frontier.
  • What is freedom?
    I guess my question is, do you think your definition of freedom collapses into contradiction. If not, why? In what ways does definiteness not result in constraint?Count Timothy von Icarus

    I don't think I have defined it, except negatively. Even in mechanics this applies; the 'free' wheel is the one that is not tied by belt or gear but can move in- dependently. One cannot from that say what it will do.
    There is necessarily restriction implied by the finitude of human beings; lambs gambol in an ecstasy of freedom, but they do not fly.

    For humans, I think the limit of individual freedom is the limit of individual responsibility. they are, psychologically, two sides of one coin. To be totally free is to take total responsibility for the world. This is how i would account for morality, while keeping it personal. So it is not my business to tell you what is moral, that would be to usurp your freedom; but in drawing that line I am taking responsibility for you even while you are free to be irresponsible.

    I am aware that this is not very clear, but I am at the limits of both my understanding and my ability to communicate. So I will have to leave it there, unsatisfactory though it is. I will go quiet and read along and see if anything gets any clearer.
  • The Shoutbox
    I notice someone has forgotten the first rule of alien club.
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    That source that you're pulling from, that conservative Christian think tank, has received nearly a million dollars from Exxon mobile. Let's follow that money.flannel jesus

    The pot calling the ice cream-maker black. Reminds me of the sexual morality of the Catholic church.
  • What is freedom?
    Thanks! My theory is that every thread should have a theme tune, because communication requires and assists a community to come together, and music is the food of love. :wink:
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    We definitely need to follow the climate change money.Agree-to-Disagree

    So follow it. Try not to keep going in a circle though.
  • What is freedom?
    Freedom is when we do what we want to do.Count Timothy von Icarus

    Yes, you said that, and then you said it is when we avoid doing what we don't want to do, and then t
    you said it is when we do what we think to do.

    I disagree.

    I'm not sure what you mean by "mechanical." Thought is mechanical to the degree that nature as a whole is "mechanical."Count Timothy von Icarus

    Why do you think that? I say thought is mechanical because it is binary (true or false) operates with opposites and the nearest it can come to freedom is 'choice'. But choice is just an unresolved conflict. whereas freedom is beyond thought, it is the new.

    The idea of self-tyranny or slavery to one’s thoughts and desires is an odd one because one cannot be a slave to himself, both master and slave at the same time.NOS4A2

    It is an odd idea. But the ideas of slave and master are already very odd. But one experiences things, and then finds ways to talk about them. Men put other men in chains and beat them if they do not obey. One learns to obey, because one cannot escape.

    One is enslaved by the master, but one is enslaved equally by one's fear of a beating. And if the slave is enslaved by his fear, the master is also enslaved by his desire. The master is addicted to power and luxury, and his fear is that the slaves will revolt and enslave him in turn and beat him. This is the story of unfreedom, of being a slave to desire and fear. This is the life of a well trained dog; this is not freedom for slave or for master. So it seems that no one can be free, while another is a slave - maybe one day...

  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    Here is an interesting article to read :grin:Agree-to-Disagree

    It's not interesting. It doesn't follow the money. The only fact is that the government is spending money on climate research (and presumably on mitigation measures, but the distinction is not made). But there is no explanation of any financial incentive for anyone to persuade the government to act in this way. government is creating research, and government is creating a green industry , and these new industries are creating the crisis? It doesn't make 'follow the money' sense because no one has a money motive for doing it. Why invest in green energy rather than oil? Not a hint of a tint of an answer. No financial motive even suggested for any conspiracy.

    Established financial interests can and do conspire to distort science and influence governments Oil industry, tobacco industry, pharmaceuticals, agro chemicals. Where is the financial interest in your conspiracy? There is none, because there is none you have mentioned, and there is none in the feeble article you cited. Because all the industries that might have such interests have been created by the supposed conspiracy they are supposed to have conspired to create.

    It's nonsense on stilts, and straight out of the kindergarten playground of unimaginative reflecting of complaints with zero attention to good sense. It has become the tactic of first resort these days.

    "The oil industry is cheating."
    " No, the green industry is cheating."

    The first claim is supported by motive, leaked documentary evidence, campaign funds records etc etc. The second has nothing. not even a suspect to accuse.
  • The Shoutbox
    In the UK, summer consists of three warm days and a thunderstorm; all the rest is cold and wet except in February alone, which is even worse. But with global warming, we now sometimes get two summers in a good year.
  • What is freedom?
    How are we free unless our actions are ruled by our thoughts, unless we act for a reason? Surely, completely arbitrary action isn't freedom, right?Count Timothy von Icarus

    Do you think that anything that is not thought is arbitrary? I would say rather that thought is mechanical, and not free at all. You see I suggested that desire controlled us and you replaced it with fear. and now it is thought. It seems to me that freedom is what you want rid of, what you want to control and fix. But freedom isn't like that; from freedom comes the new, whereas desire and fear and thought are always about the past. Freedom is the unknown, and the unthought. It is creativity.
  • What is freedom?
    we might think some circumstances we find in something approaching a "state of nature," for mankind are not good: widespread food insecurity, constant band level warfare, thralldom and slavery for the vanquished, male relatives exerting undue control over their female relatives' romantic relationships, infanticide etc.Count Timothy von Icarus

    We do think it, and we are ruled by that thinking. But what of freedom?

    My suggestion is that freedom is the starting place, and we immediately make rules about it.
  • What is freedom?
    The more we know, the more we are able to shape states of affairs such that circumstances we desire obtain.Count Timothy von Icarus

    Or we could try shaping our desires to the circumstances.

    But personally, I prefer to leave things the shape they are, and not be a slave to circumstance or desire.
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    Well there's some Orgs spending money, but are they making money? you know like Big Oil, and Big Pharma? Show me the commercial interests distorting the science, not governments responding to a crisis. There's a big difference.
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    Do I need to make the argument that conspiracies of the poor and powerless are not worth worrying about?
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    scientists who are funded by "Big Climate"?Agree-to-Disagree

    Who are they? Multi-National windmill manufacturers?
  • What are you listening to right now?
    Sandy Denny was better than Joan Baez better even than Joni Mitchell at expressing the emotional intensity of a lyric. You need more...

  • What is freedom?
    You may search
    At any cost
    But how long
    Can you search for what’s not lost?
    Everybody will help you
    Some people are very kind
    But if I can save you any time
    Come on, give it to me
    I’ll keep it with mine
    — Bob Dylan

    When I am most free, I am least concerned about freedom and have no feeling of freedom. I make no choices at the crossroads, but dance to the rhythm of my heart.

    I am in free-fall, glad at the next moment to be arrested by my parachute, and strung up in the sky. Perhaps to be unburdened, to be without connection, is not after all to be free.

    But instead to want to be nowhere else but right here, right now, laboriously explaining the obvious again.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Hey guys, the Donald would not appreciate you talking about each other on a thread that is all about Him!
    "That's very very bad folks! I will get you all back on topic, which is my greatness, or lock you all up and build a wall round you, that you will pay for.'
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Imagine yourself having a serious conversation about Spanish politics, in Spanish, with a native speaker of a different political persuasion.

    And breathe.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Here the opposite happens.javi2541997

    Well Spain is a very different place to the US, or the UK where I am. That might account for our different intuitions. Living with Franco after the civil war, I can see that 'the left' would look disorganised by comparison. And certainly an apathetic to hostile working class can also be a major problem for the left.. I'll just say that Trump is no Franco, and America is not in a state of economic collapse. But nor is it immune from fascist takeover.
  • Let’s play ‘Spot the Fallacy’! (share examples of bad logic in action)
    What's fun here is how few folk on a philosophy forum understand what a fallacy is.Banno

    A fallacy is what results when the fallible philosophise. Fortunately, we have enough gods among us to keep us from failing and falling into fallacy when it matters. (excuse my effing).
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    You don't have to convince me that the right can win elections and be more popular than the left. You have to convince me that they favour widening the vote and not restricting it.
  • The Shoutbox

    A season is a division of the year[1] based on changes in weather, ecology, and the number of daylight hours in a given region.
    In temperate and sub-polar regions, four seasons based on the Gregorian calendar are generally recognized: spring, summer, autumn (or fall), and winter. Ecologists often use a six-season model for temperate climate regions which are not tied to any fixed calendar dates: prevernal, vernal, estival, serotinal, autumnal, and hibernal. Many tropical regions have two seasons: the rainy, wet, or monsoon season and the dry season. Some have a third cool, mild, or harmattan season. "Seasons" can also be dictated by the timing of important ecological events such as hurricane season, tornado season, and wildfire season.[citation needed] Some examples of historical importance are the ancient Egyptian seasons—flood, growth, and low water—which were previously defined by the former annual flooding of the Nile in Egypt.

    Alas, Google teaches that there is always a right answer to every question, when in fact vagueness rules. In this case, the Northern temperate zone bias is very obvious, but even then, in terms of sunlight levels that use of the equinox as a marker rather than weather seems to indicate, , and assuming an equal division of 4 seasons, the equinox should mark the middle of the season rather than the beginning or end.

    But these terms are conventional and local. At the poles, the equinoxes mark sunrise and sunset of a year-long single day.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    It is literally the contrary. When people have more access to voting, the number of votes turns right because the citizens tend to be more conservative than leftists statistically.javi2541997

    It literally isn't, because citizens tend to be more leftist than conservatives statistically. But literally provide any evidence of what you say, because all the evidence I see is that the right wants to restrict the vote and the left wants to expand it in every case I know of, whether it is blacks, postal votes, women, young people, whatever.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    It is almost inevitably the case that making it easier to vote tends to favour the left, and making it harder favours the right, because people with mobility problems are more likely to be poorer, and poor people are more likely to be left wing.

    But the democratic principle must be to let everybody vote as easily as possible, not to put barriers in the way of, say, people who have to use public transport during a pandemic.

    So postal voting is only a 'steal' tactic if fraud is taking place, not if it favours one candidate. Rather, measures to limit the vote, even if disguised as 'security measures' are an attempt to steal, unless there is evidence of widespread fraud that needs to be curtailed.
  • Reading "The Laws of Form", by George Spencer-Brown.
    You're making the very simple, complicated. these are not equations, but evaluations of f for all the possible values of a & b. the right hand side in each case is the result of simplifying the left


    = (because n= . )

    = f.

    And this means that when a = n and b = n, f can = n or m. And thus we have the shape of the flip flop circuit.
  • Reading "The Laws of Form", by George Spencer-Brown.
    I'm struggling to see what you are trying to do there. you want to be simplifying, not complicating.

    You cannot begin at the deepest level because re-entry makes it infinite. So you simply evaluate each case as it stands, and the f drops out in every case except the last one, where everything else drops out. It is because the f doesn't drop out that there are still the 2 possibilities for its value.

    Wait, I think i see what you are doing - treating each line as an equation, and then substituting the right back in for f.
    You don't want to do that! Each line is a result for a combination of an and b. There is no working shown, and almost none to do. so for (2):–


    and the re-entered f can be ignored.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Poor old Trump, the media star, never gets a fair break from the media, does he?
    Poor old Trump, the compulsive litigator and packer of the supreme court, never gets a fair break from the law.
    Poor old Trump, not a dollar to his name, working hard for the people for no personal gain.

    Just like Jesus really.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    It is clear that the Public is easily manipulated by its media.yebiga

    As soon as that is clear, worrying about election rigging and democracy is redundant. The people who pull the strings of the public will pull them anyway. This is a claim that is made by *looks around at presidential history* Reagan and Trump, the media star presidents.
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    Sick, insane people.Mikie

    The lunatics have decided to remove the foundations and fly the asylum to the land of freedom. I don't think they'll get very far, but I wish i wouldn't be buried in the rubble.

    When politicians try to repeal the laws of physics, people die, but the laws stand firm.
  • Climate Change (General Discussion)
    Come gather 'round people
    Wherever you roam
    And admit that the waters
    Around you have grown
    And accept it that soon
    You'll be drenched to the bone
    If your time to you is worth savin'
    Then you better start swimmin'
    Or you'll sink like a stone
    For the times they are a-changin'.
    — Bob Dylan
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    That is rather interesting.

    Particularly the equivalence drawn between Bernie and Donald. I'm reminded of the French revolution as much as of the rise of Fascism in the 30's. A system that cannot adapt fast enough has to collapse, and that is what consensus politics is doing.

    "Heads must roll" is the new consensus, but also "Not mine". The contradictions are obvious. The turmoil will not lead to what its instigators want though, but to a political system that will address the new imperatives - to Green Fascism. We will face reality eventually, when everything else has been tried and has failed. And by then the global power will be China, because they already have the autocratic system in place, and have already shown themselves capable of radical change of policy.

    In the dispute between liberty and the laws of physics, liberty is bound to lose.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Well aren't we all putting on our wigs and getting excited! I maintain that the defendants version of the truth is liable to be that they are not guilty, and then their lawyers' business is to make this somewhat credible. Accordingly, a lawyer who warned in advance that one's proposed actions were illegal would be ill-placed to mount a defence thereof.
  • Donald Trump (All General Trump Conversations Here)
    Except criminal lawyers, whose job is to represent the client's version of reality.