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Topics - The Johnny

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Apple Talk / 38 ways to win an argument (a classic)
« on: March 04, 2014, 02:13:05 am »

For all of you who have ever been involved in an online debate in any way, Arthur Schopenhauer’s “38 Ways To Win An Argument” is indispensable. Most of these techniques will seem familiar to you, right from questioning the motive of a person making the argument instead of the argument itself (No. 35), exaggerating the propositions stated by the other person (No. 1) , misrepresenting the other person’s words (No. 2) and attacking a straw man instead (No. 3). It’s a full handbook of intellectual dishonesty there. Indeed, I generally avoid online debates because they inevitably degenerate to No. 38.

The full text is below the fold. Many thanks to my friend Nitin Pai for reintroducing me to it.

im sure most of us know this, but, in case anyone missed it, its a digested version of Schopenhauer's propositions

Apple Talk / 100k wills, one body - AN EXPERIMENT
« on: February 20, 2014, 02:42:53 am »

I feel like this is the way our minds/psyches work... tens of thousands of unconscious desires, impulses and wills, fighting for supremacy over the body...  :fnord:

Apple Talk / Revolution in the future...
« on: January 15, 2014, 05:56:24 am »
... will be impossible because gasoline will be too expensive to waste on Molotovs.

Apple Talk / Poverty Impedes Cognitive Function
« on: December 25, 2013, 12:49:20 am »

Mani, Mullainathan, Shafir & Zhao (2013), Poverty Impedes Cognitive Function, Science.
Several people nominated the graphs in this paper, the central hypothesis of which is that poverty directly worsens cognitive performance. The authors ran an experiment with 101 shoppers in a New Jersey mall. Before collecting demographic data that allowed the authors to categorize the shoppers as rich or poor, the shoppers were presented with a hypothetical scenario describing a financial problem: e.g. "Your car is having some trouble and requires $X to be fixed. You can pay in full, take a loan, or take a chance and forego the service at the moment... How would you go about making this decision?" Some shoppers were randomly assigned to the "easy" problem where the amount of money required was $150, others got the "hard" problem where they had to pay $1,500. The rationale is that poor and rich alike could probably manage to dig up $150 relatively easily, but figuring out how to find $1,500 at short notice would evoke more monetary concerns for the poor. The cognitive juggling this might necessitate, or the scarcity mindset it might engender, is what the authors argue impedes cognitive performance.

So, rich and poor alike got the 'easy' or 'hard' financial-problem prime. While mulling over how they'd solve this problem, they then had to complete Raven's matrices and cognitive control intelligence tasks. The graph describes the results: the rich and poor performed similarly on these intelligence tasks when mulling the 'easy' financial problem, but the poor performed much worse when both groups were digesting the 'hard' problem. Note also the elegant way significance levels are shown between and within groups.

i cant by fuck find the relevant thread, but there you go, the link also references other interesting 14 graphs of '10-'13

Apple Talk / Nightmare in P.U.A. Street: Horrormirth with a Vengeance
« on: July 10, 2013, 01:34:47 pm »


How can people believe this?  :lulz: :lulz: :lulz:

 :horrormirth: :horrormirth: :horrormirth:

(I know why people believe this, its just a rhetorical bash-your-face-into-wall question)

Aneristic Illusions / Disney to trademark "Día de los muertos"
« on: May 08, 2013, 02:43:49 am »

I haven't done verification of the veracity of the process, but, lol what?

Aneristic Illusions / Theory and a parable: opportunity cost
« on: April 19, 2013, 07:00:22 am »

    Have you ever witnessed the anger of the good shopkeeper, James Goodfellow, when his careless son has happened to break a pane of glass? If you have been present at such a scene, you will most assuredly bear witness to the fact that every one of the spectators, were there even thirty of them, by common consent apparently, offered the unfortunate owner this invariable consolation – "It is an ill wind that blows nobody good. Everybody must live, and what would become of the glaziers if panes of glass were never broken?"

    Now, this form of condolence contains an entire theory, which it will be well to show up in this simple case, seeing that it is precisely the same as that which, unhappily, regulates the greater part of our economical institutions.

    Suppose it cost six francs to repair the damage, and you say that the accident brings six francs to the glazier's trade – that it encourages that trade to the amount of six francs – I grant it; I have not a word to say against it; you reason justly. The glazier comes, performs his task, receives his six francs, rubs his hands, and, in his heart, blesses the careless child. All this is that which is seen.

    But if, on the other hand, you come to the conclusion, as is too often the case, that it is a good thing to break windows, that it causes money to circulate, and that the encouragement of industry in general will be the result of it, you will oblige me to call out, "Stop there! Your theory is confined to that which is seen; it takes no account of that which is not seen."

    It is not seen that as our shopkeeper has spent six francs upon one thing, he cannot spend them upon another. It is not seen that if he had not had a window to replace, he would, perhaps, have replaced his old shoes, or added another book to his library. In short, he would have employed his six francs in some way, which this accident has prevented.[1][2]

"It is never an advantage to have one’s plants destroyed by shells or bombs unless those plants have already become valueless or acquired a negative value by depreciation and obsolescence. ... Plants and equipment cannot be replaced by an individual (or a socialist government) unless he or it has acquired or can acquire the savings, the capital accumulation, to make the replacement. But war destroys accumulated capital. ... Complications should not divert us from recognizing the basic truth that the wanton destruction of anything of real value is always a net loss, a misfortune, or a disaster, and whatever the offsetting considerations in a particular instance, can never be, on net balance, a boon or a blessing."[7]

Cost of opportunity should be the sort of thing that government officials lose sleep over (or pretty much anyone, when it comes down to it), because any use of resources is in detriment of a use in another area, because, you know, there is scarcity of resources and all that.

And this frame of thought can be applied from the most menial to the most important of decisions:

*Do i eat junk food and live life being overweight? How will i have to compensate for it? Does eating junk food cost me too much to buy other things or actual healthy food?

*If i went to university instead of working, how long until i make a profit from the hypothetical money i could be making at work?

*If i spend overtime on a hobby that makes me have less hours of sleep, is it worth it for overall health?

*What are the costs of enforcing a law that punishes poor people instead of devoting it to social programs?

And ultimately:

*What are the human costs when only monetary efficiency are taken into account?

(Im out of steam here, see if someone else can connect the dots better that I)

Or Kill Me / "We know what is best for you"
« on: April 02, 2013, 08:00:56 am »
Historically speaking, I recall some examples of people trying to help people in the following manners:

-"We're going to teach these poor savages about God so that they may be saved"
-"We're going to teach liberty and democracy to these poor victims of a dictatorship"
-"We are going to get a court mandate to send this poor addict to rehab"
-"We should castrate poor people because they don't know any better"
-"We should deny Black people rights until they know how to use them"

(feel free to add new ones or correct the inaccurate ones, I'm no historian)

There is an inherent sense of superiority within all these statements, and it reminds me of a saying known to Spanish speakers "El camino al infierno esta pavimentado de buenas intenciones" (The road to hell is paved by good intentions). It's basicly saying "I am smarter than you, poor half-sentient creature, I know what is best for you".

Is that actually helping? Or is it just a way of justifying actions that are violent and self-serving?

Helping in its truest sense is about advising and providing support when somebody is in a vulnerable position... the International Monetary Fund gives out loans in exchange for following its dictates on policies, policies that will weaken that given country's political power in the long run... is that helping? Or is that being a vulture?

Politicians do "what is best for the population" all of the time, the problem is that, what they think is best for the population is tainted by their own agenda and class perspective (when they sincerely want to help, rather than just pillaging everything in their path).

In any variant of psycho-therapy, the therapist should only ever help the patient make its thoughts clearer, not ever to "advise" or tell them what to do... this is a basic principle to preserve the person's autonomy and the way to avoid being violent towards them.

There is a fine line between helping or violently propagating one's own agenda and will, and that line is "I know what is best for you".


What is a social representation?

"[...] every social representation is the representation of something and someone. It is not the duplicate of what is real, nor the duplicate of the ideal, nor the subjective or objective part of the object." (Jodelet)

"[...] a functional vision of the world that permits the individual or group to assign meaning to its own conducts, and to understand reality through its own system of reference, and in this manner, adapt and define itself a place in the world. [...] it works as a system of interpretation of reality that rules the relations of individuals with its physical and social environment, because it will determine its behaviuor or practices. Its a guide for action, it orients actions and social relationships. Its a system of pre-codification of reality, given that it determines a set of anticipations and expectations." (Moscovici)

"Ideology" is similar in the sense that theres elements (ideas or representations) that guide decisions and behaviours of individuals and groups, as well as being systems of interpretation of reality.



I cross-posted so that if anyone is interested they can join in the discussion:


Ive briefly discussed the presidential candidates in another thread, but anyway, the moment of truth (or rather say, the moment of fraud) is soon to come.

Shall the Old Regime come back into power through dubious methods such as the 3,000,000 votes that were found to be marked weeks before the election?

Or maybe the very ironic female candidate of the ultra-conservative party that started the War on Drugs?

Maybe the people will vote for the doppelganger of Obama that promises change and a thousand cornucopias?

Possibly vote for the hand puppet of Elba Esther Gordillo (commandress in chief of the Teacher's Syndicate) that stresses a hipster image, and basicly takes ridiculous postures appealing to the youth so its party can maintain 4% votes and still remain existing as a party?

Im just utterly ashamed and disgusted of the whole situation, and no matter how many "RADICAL" movements such as the supposedly non-partisan #yosoy132 or the IFE's tv spots tell me "YOUR VOTE IS YOUR POWER, YOU HAZ TO EXERSICES IT" id rather fuckoff at my house.

It is very sad how on one of the IFE's tv spots, the actress playing the role of "enthusiast voter" said a key phrase "Votar es mi ilusión" which roughly translates to either "Voting is my dream", "Voting is my hope" or the last, but not least, of the possible meanings "Voting is my illusion"...

And, oh boy, indeed it is, its the illusion of power over an event that has already been manipulated by fraudulent measures; voting is just an illusion, so we dont have to feel like victims or drones.

But that's basicly what we really amount to in this system.

Aneristic Illusions / Google/Apple and drones
« on: June 21, 2012, 12:10:40 pm »

    For their digital mapping projects, the companies of Silicon Valley have drones that can capture aerial images of objects as small as 10cm; they are alerted for violations to privacy

So the monopoly of privacy infringement is supposed to be held by the government? k.

Or Kill Me / On the recurrence of discussions
« on: June 09, 2012, 11:17:21 pm »

This came about on a reflection based on linking some recent (and not so recent) threads with common practice in the social sciences.


First-off, what is "beating a dead horse" in regards to a discussion?

That can supposedly be resolved easily with a definition:

Quote from: wikipedia
is an idiom that means a particular request or line of conversation is already foreclosed or otherwise resolved, and any attempt to continue it is futile; or that to continue in any endeavour (physical, mental, etc.) is a waste of time as the outcome is already decided.

All in all that is well and simple: perhaps its the same discussion that has been replayed in its standard iterations for the billionth time in a very similar manner... but is that a dead-end? is it futile? has the outcome been decided?

I posit that it is not any of this things, but here is the catch: there needs to be reviewing of past discussions, history of the subject, and a general knowledge of what has been said and done before. And it also requires the participants in the discussion to integrate the new information or knowledge that is discussed even if it runs contrary to their ideology or beliefs (otherwise its just partisan screeching on any given debate).

This is where it relates to the social sciences: it is not forbidden or useless to discuss anything... but the more a topic or subject has been discussed or dissected, the cost to be paid for those that wish to participate in the discussion, the more work they have to do to actually do something useful... one has to review previous positionings or theories, learn about their critiques or downfalls and what came of it.

Say, you want to make a serious statement on what and why "love" is what it is, beyond what you subjectively think it is? Go read up on the history of the positions regarding the subject, the context in which those positions affected the creation of that posture, the critiques, assess the current context in which you create the new concept and then maybe if you arent tired after all that, you can make that serious statement.

Speaking specifically about PD and its drug threads, theres agreement on that its a reiteration of past discussions, so the correct thing to do is for those interested in discussing such topic, to read ALL the drug threads, so they know the context and the arguments, instead of running around in circles.

So give me CONTEXT, give me REVIEW and give me BACKGROUND


Apple Talk / A note on globalization and appropiation
« on: May 27, 2012, 05:50:03 am »

Im sure you all know this song...

but hear ye! how it is transformed locally!


I cant find the fucking thread where we were discusing about how imprisoning illegal immigrants its a win-win situation (sardonically speaking), anyways

Benjamin Lopez Patiño was sentenced to 10 years in prison at Arizona, where he was found guilty of illegally reentering the USA after being deported.

Those prisons arent gonna fill up on their own chappy!

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