mahnmut: (An understanding has been reached.)
"This thing is less-worse than some other things" is the weakest and worst excuse I've ever heard. Problem is, I've been hearing it way too often lately.

Is accepting "less terrible" things the new norm now? Where did all that hopey-change thing go?
mahnmut: (An understanding has been reached.)
Why should the GOP push for an electable candidacy at any cost? Isn't it better for them to have their cleansing experience through a totally imploded Trump candidacy, have some navel-gazing afterwards, and start anew? Why the obsession to win elections here and now, regardless of the longer-term consequences?

Don't those guys have actual think-tanks to do the thinking for them, for the sake of avoiding tanking?
mahnmut: (The Swallows have won!)
There's a reason for the rise of populism. And it's economic strife and all the social turmoil that comes with it. The political elites being inadequate in the whole situation, also helps.
mahnmut: (WTF-E?)
I find it weird that we live in a world where having your debt held by foreign banks is deemed a much better option than actually having your debt held by your own banks, with your own people's money in them. Turns out that relying on non-existing, virtual money that gets typed on some PC screen somewhere, and somehow miraculously pops up on the world "market", is a much better "solution" than having actual money deposited at actual vaults in actual banks, held in actual accounts by actual people/firms/institutions. It's a perverse world that we live in.
mahnmut: (Default)
There's been a recent post on tp about "is science and religion compatible?" I.e. can they coexist?
Well, tell you what. What distinguishes them is critical thinking. Investigation. Self-dissection. It's a merciless process that's at the core of the former and is the complete antithesis of the latter.

Unlike religion or politics, science will mercilessly pursue the evidence with repeated experiments.
Other than that, are they compatible? Well, anything is compatible, we're humans after all. Yesterday I learned that onion is compatible with strawberry jam (or so I was told), but meh. It'd be kinda weird and maybe a little, um, how was the word believers like to use... oh yes, "unnatural" to try.

mahnmut: (Quaero togam pacem.)
The name of the robotics scientist and transhumanist Hans Moravec that I saw menioned here served as a prototype for the Moravecs, a race of cybernetic organisms that populated Dan Simmons' fictional future universe in the Ilium/Olympos cycle. Those half human, half machine beings were each adapted to their respective habitats, and the one we're seeing here on this pic is actually Mahnmut.


He's small and versatile because his environment on one of the Jovian moons is such that he has to spend all his life in a submarine. The other creature behind him is Orphu, who's enormous and fat like a giant crab. They share a passion for Shakespeare and they often chat via the communication channels. The circumstances force Mahnmut to descend on Mars and look for the Post-Humans, a race of superhuman godlike cyborgs who look very much like the Olympian gods. Etc, etc.

Why I'm telling this. In many ways, these strange Moravec robots have become more "human" than the humans themselves. I mean they've preserved humanity in its pure form. For instance they're pacifist (hence my motto Quaero Togam Pacem, I come in peace). Eventually they play a role in the fate of humankind. But I won't bring any more spoilers here. :-)
mahnmut: (Default)
(I mean here - online. Not here, as in the deep existential question. Just... here. On a forum/blog).

Interesting questions here. Now, let's see.

I must confess. I'm online mostly for the lulz. Not in a "sick" way but in a facetious/entertaining way. And I'm being completely honest here. We have enough troubles IRL to allow ourselves to have still more online too, or to transfer our grievances onto other people here. It wouldn't be fair. Of course there are sometimes serious issues to talk about in a serious manner but keeping it a bit humorous helps a lot, especially because most people wouldn't allow their convictions to be merely changed through some online discussion anyway (although there are exceptions). I.e. I try to relax here.

Plenty of stuff I'd agree on with conservatives. I'd be more concerned about my own side consistently showing signs of inconsistency, hypocrisy and double standard - now that's something that truly aggravates me. But that's not a monopoly of any one side, unfortunately. Would've been co much easier to pick a side if there was one which was perfect, but such a thing just does.not.exist.
mahnmut: (Quaero togam pacem.)
Guy A: Science when it does right is wonderfult but terrible when it does wrong.

Guy B: No kidding. Same goes for religion, except they so rarely get anything right.

Me: The more disturbing thing is, they never admit doing anything wrong.
mahnmut: (The Swallows have won!)
There was a story about a guy who goes door to door, trying to raise awareness about social problems and to persuade people to donate to this just cause or the other -- and almost invariably receiving raised brows, "no, thanks", turned backs, slammed doors, lots of "cop out" excuses and generally, lots of indifference on people's part.

Well, I've been clashing with this reality every day. Literally. Every fucking day under the Sun. People would claim they care, make nice faces and say nice words, and then they'd just cop out or whatever you call that action when they just turn their back on you with some stupid excuse, or with no excuse whatsoever, and essentially tell you to piss off.

It's even in places like my own party (ANCYL) where people claim to be fighting for social justice, and yet I witness how power corrupts them. How they hide behind the collective irresponsibility ("this is not my job, you should call at the appropriate place"). I witness how none of them are prone to see their flaws even when you tell them right into their face. Then you become the bad guy because you're telling them things they wouldn't like to hear. "Dude, I thought you were one of ours" / "Dude, I thought you're a friend". Well, guess what. That's what friends and allies are for. You can trust them to tell you your flaws right into the face. But somehow, people don't want to hear unpleasant things. They'd just cop out, and bury their head in the sand and pretend that none of what's happening outside their living-room is part of our actual fucking Universe!!! And they think that, if they're OK for the time being, then everything else is OK and other people's troubles can't reach them.

But guess what? We don't live in caves, miles away and separated by impassable gorges like our ancestors did 100,000 years ago. Today everything is interconnected. And if you don't care about a small problem now, chances are it'll only get worse in the future, and come back at you to bite you in the ass, and bite hard. And then you'd wonder where that came from. And this extends to almost every aspect of social life. But no, we just don't care, because it ain't happening here and now. Yeah, people are that myopic.

Honestly, I don't have a viable strategy for dealing with that, no. I know only one thing: keep the pressure. It may look hopeless at times but I can't think of anything else right now. At least you stay true to yourself, although it often hurts to keep bumping your head against a brick wall. On the upside, your head grows thicker if you do it long enough. ;-)
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