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07/25/2012

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Anywhere But Here Is Better

Dave - this is an action replay of all end-of-empire cliff falls. To take just the Roman and British Empires as examples, they "ruled the known world" for generations and then collapsed into themselves because of natural entropy.

The US Empire has risen and fallen rather more swiftly, but it's following the pattern. And people are reacting all the wrong way. As you've said, they don't want to deal with changing their behaviour, they just flail their arms and do more damage.

Case in point: http://www.newsday.com/news/nation/dark-knight-shooting-leads-to-surge-in-gun-sales-1.3859237

Bam bam we're all dead.

Mitch

So "Anywhere" what is the RIGHT way of reacting? Flailing arms doesn't seem to be very analogous to "doing more damge"? Responses seem to remain emotional, and lead to emotional fallacies and much of the crazy responses and headlines you see in the MSM. Getting into my car each day remains one of the statistically most dangerous things I do each day. Eating garbage food to excess and the risks of heart attacks/cancer is something people can attempt to mitigate. But living life to have knee jerk reactions to statistical anomalies, is like going around cowering b/c I may get hit by lightning. I don't see how you quickly morph from something somewhat relevant to the article about poverty/unfairness and shift to bullshit about gun sales. Changing your behavior or being armed/or disarmed is very unlikely to prevent anything like the CO incident. The good news is that although the media hypes these events like they happen all the time, they don't, people should worry about other things that have some realistic chance of happening and that your behavior can actually help to reduce/or eliminate risk. All the dems/rep's and their followers just continue to regurgitate their confirmation bias. I would hope people that read this site, would challenge their own biases, and not just respond with emotional garbage.

T E CHo

Perhaps...


degree_of_abusing_the_middle_class_by_the_one_percenters = k * total_middle_class_population / middle_class_who_own_guns


where k is a general motivational-emotional 'reluctance factor' , for a variety of obvious reasons

K may vary depending on the country, zeitgeist, or political party in charge
.
.
.

Anywhere But Here Is Better

Mitch - you misunderstand my point and are wide of the mark in judgmentally accusing me of emotional garbage. I am referring to Homo sapiens and "our" inability to function in any harmony with the biosphere, and barely in any harmony with each other. Because of this basic stupidity and short-termism, we sow the seeds of our own destruction, empire after empire.

Huge imbalances in the distribution of wealth worldwide is one sign of our brainlessness. Any truly sapient being would strive for the collective benefit of the species, not their own selfish benefit and their narrow gene pool (offspring).

The fact that people are rushing to buy guns after a shooting outrage is a small sign of the same "thinking", or should I say non-thinking. The action of the so-called investment bankers in continuing with their obsessive thieving of taxpayers' money is another sign.

One small point in addition. You say the media hypes these events like they happen all the time, they don't. Well, I don't care two hoots about the poisonous mass media, but you ought to do more research. Take the Brady Campaign for instance. They list some 370 mass shootings in the US since 2005: http://www.bradycampaign.org/xshare/pdf/major-shootings.pdf

If you lost a relative in any of these killing sprees, you might not be so cool.

As for the "right way of acting", there's no real answer to that one, given the basic flaws in Homo sapiens. Maybe on an individual level we can each try to promote an alternative to selfish greed as the raison d'etre of human life, but en masse, I don't see how enough of us will change tack to make a difference.

Gretchen

"...we cannot allow these globalist people to be running the world anymore, I mean look at what they are doing, they are on a death wish, they are in denial, they have no right to govern this planet any longer." -- Yoichi Shimatsu

Mitch

http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/lcod.htm/

As you can see statistically there are many issues that are much larger issues 'en masse'. "If you lost a relative..." comment is just more emotional hyperbole. Like most people, if you live long enough you will lose many loved ones. I have lost many loved ones from the top 10 list from the CDC. The emotionality of the topic of gun violence and because people are scared of it--when perhaps they should be scared of heart disease and cancer is apparently lost--b/c its not dramatic enough? If you watch a loved one die slowly of cancer, I would say its pretty dramatic, in addition to not being a statistical minority. Suicide and suicide by gun makes up a large percentage of all yearly gun deaths, the great bulk of the rest are gang killings and the fallout from that. But gang murders and shootings get almost no real attention in the national media, yet anything that is more episodic than the continous gang violence is put on TV day after day.

I was aware of the Brady data, and its a statistical anomaly as I sated previously. That doesn't mean its not a real issue, and certainly not a dramatic one to anyone directly involved in a shooting. But Trauma, and traumatic responses isn't compelling data, its more emotional fallacy. Do we just cherry pick whatever is scary? Do we see daily media sensations about what does happen all the time that is killing massive amounts of people? Do we see daily national news stories about Chicago/LA?

Good luck with changing the human condition, its difficult enough to change one's self. I think the end of your comment is the most cogent thing you stated, I agree I don't see how enough change will happen to make a difference. Humans change via dissonance, most are not motivated self-changers. So as personal/community discomfort rises--change will eventually occur.

I don't see how you compare people in CO going out to buy guns in response to the tragedy as the same as investment bankers continuing to game the system.

Of course your initial point is what this blog often points out, we are fucked, because of culture and genes. We have neurophysiology geared toward ages long since past, so its no surprise that we stay short term focused and myopic in view. If this is the titanic, do we just watch the ship go down and get histrionic about whatever happens to hit your emotional triggers be it guns, or chips, or political parties? Or are their lifeboat choices available? Or is this just "flailing of arms" and wringing of hands--meanwhile nothing changes.

Edward Fullbrook

As long as Americans remain in denial about the state of their country the more it will decline and, worse, its rate of decline is likely to accelerate. For Americans today patriotism is mainly about finding the courage to face up to the facts of their country’s decline, and anti-patriotism about hiding those facts from view. So far the anti-patriots are firmly in charge. But that could change very quickly if American’s were to reconnect with their history. The recent substantial article “America in denial: We're number 29 (of 30)” http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2012/07/2012717104035237926.html on Al Jazeera by Paul Rosenberg is packed full of summaries of quality of life data (56 indicators) for 30 OECD countries. Have a look.

Anywhere But Here Is Better

Thanks Mitch - I think we agree more than we disagree.

We can't possibly know each other's emotional states, so there's no point berating me about what I may or may not be emotional/histrionic about or scared of. (As it happens, I have no fear of death or assault, and I too have witnessed people dying and being maimed in front of me. I remain unlikely ever to resort to gunfire myself.)

What's important is to consider and debate the issues that Dave magnificently coalesces into a few paragraphs daily. Hope is a filthy word and I hardly dare whisper it on DOTE, but I hang on to a shred of let's call it philosophical interest that - perhaps - our species may evolve into true sapience, albeit in very few numbers compared with the seven billion today.

As you say, it seems that nothing changes. We'll probably never know ourselves, but at some future point in the Earth's life, some form of sentient being may wonder who or what the hell produced that weird stuff buried in the ground.

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