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I covet your conveyance. Thanks @MCjmojo13 vi@beautiful_loser

thinking

listening to "Tosca - Fuck Dub (Brazilia Remix)" on Blip

Posted on 2010.01.20 at 18:48
Current Music: uck Dub (Braz
@Nymph always.

thinking

listening to "Caspa Rusko - Hammertime" on Blip

Posted on 2010.01.20 at 18:46
Current Music: usko -
Who can touch this? (I bet @Mike_Mongoose, @Nymph, and @atank can.)

Totally inappropriate for all audiences.

Yum.


thinking

listening to "Beach House - Norway" on Blip

Posted on 2009.12.08 at 12:34
Current Music: http://blip.fm/~hhqbc

thinking

Still up to it.

Posted on 2009.01.12 at 08:57
G.W. Bush is holding a press conference. He says, still, that he didn't make any major policy mistakes. None. Regarding Katrina: you guys'd've blamed me for it anyway.

Then he said America's moral standing around the world has not been damaged by Iraq, Gitmo, and employing torture. He said that. I'll let the reader decide what (infuriating) planet he thinks he's on.

thinking

Monoptic economic thinking by fraud Friedman

Posted on 2008.11.16 at 11:05
Current Location: West Side Park
Current Mood: irritatedirritated
Current Music: Apparat - Not A Number | Powered by Last.fm
Tags: , ,
T. Friedman writes that we should stimulate the economy by going shopping. Of course, anyone with an eye to history would note that the over-leveraging problem of American consumers has been ongoing for twenty years, and didn't start with the urging of consumers to consume by Bush after 9/11. It is correct that the increased availability of funds for ordinary Americans given an "economic stimulus package" would lead to spending. After all, people are feeling poor, and when you feel like you don't have enough money the first impulse when you get some is to spend it (as though it might evaporate). Unfortunately no government giveaway is going to be large enough to create sustained spending when large portions of it will be used to make up pre-existing shortfalls. (Those are created by lifestyles exceeding means, which Americans have been doing.) The systemic solution is to move away from a material-consumption-based economy, in the best case to an accomplishment-based one in which work as craft takes precedence over work as means-to-stuff. In the face of Friedman's "bigger boat" rhetoric, ask yourself this: with what money?

Bob Geiger says publicly what a lot of people have been thinking (and saying) for a while now: http://bobgeiger.blogspot.com/2008/11/vets-message-to-gop-on-veterans-day.html

The short version of the message is this: it is hypocritical in the extreme to exploit "pro-veteran" rhetoric for political gain while engaging in actions that harm, in various ways, the people who fight and have fought in our military adventures (none of the "wars", interventions, or military-employing brouhaha since WWII can correctly be called wars). Our women and men in uniform deserve better than being placed in harm's way for venal geopolitical advantage, and our veterans deserve much more than someone saying "thanks" once they leave the service.

amused

Is "carving at the joints" all about warm fuzzy feelings? I don't know

Posted on 2008.06.13 at 16:35
Current Location: West Side Park
Current Mood: fullfull
Current Music: Muse - Supermassive Black Hole
Tags: ,
We all take for granted in our everyday lives that things like cups and tables and doors and annoying neighbors and the Eiffel Tower are the sorts of objects we encounter in the world. The question is, when we quantify over these things are we quantifying over the sorts of things there actually are. Are we carving the world at its joints?

The question what sort of stuff is in the world is not unimportant, and in this case I'd like to discuss the mereological view of unrestricted composition. Unrestricted compositions asserts that any collection of parts of things constitutes a further thing, no matter how disperate or spatiotemporally discontinuous they are. According to this view, there are infinitely many more things in platonic heaven and they physical world than are dreamt of in our finite minds. The cup on my table and the cup on yours? An object. Ben Franklin's glasses and the Hiroshima detonation? An object.

We don't normally talk about the weirder (to us) objects that unrestricted composition countenances. And why should we? There's not much use in it. Further, our brains are adapted to an ancestral environment in which perceiving the world as made up of the sorts of objects we—by default—perceive it to be made of is a plus for not being eaten by a hyena; similarly they are adapted to not perceiving the air we breathe as an object, even though the space around is isn't empty.

Nevertheless it is possible to talk about such things, to quantify over them. When we do this, are we failing to quantify over the things the world is really made up of? To imagine carving at the joints, imagine a universe made entirely of jello; in specific there is lime jello in one half, and orange jello in the other half, exclusively, and the universe is divided along a plane. To carve at the joints in such a universe is to correctly quantify over its two halves, and the joint is the plane between them. Other possible divisions of the universe by our language could come up with its being composed of two objects one of which is 4/5 lime jello, the other of which is 1/5 lime jello. This is less convenient. On similar grounds of awkwardness, our universe oughtn't to have grue objects in it.

But since we can account for all events equally well using awkward (to us) predicates, talking about awkward (to us) objects as we can by using our familiar predicates to talk about familiar objects, how do we choose between them? Convenience and awkwardness aren't particularly strong grounds in this case, since they don't constitute applications of Ockham's razor. Of course, people who don't subscribe to unrestricted composition don't need such an appeal: the fact that we quantify over what we do is the best grounding for an argument that other, weirder ways of quantifying over what there is aren't really "about" [note to self: post on this thin word] what there really is.

There's been some debate lately about so-called quantifyer variation, according to which different ontologies employ the quantifiers with different meanings. I'm not sure what to make of this, since they are logical operators with no meaning beyond their function. Evidently the idea is similar to certain debates about "existence", according to which different "kinds" of existence are thought to obtain between certain classes of objects. Similarly it's like debates over "reality", where certain classes of objects are said to be "more real" than others.

Can you made heads or tails of this?


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