Friday, October 28, 2016

...Before They Find Us...


...Before They Find Us...
by Alfred Lehmberg


Stephen Hawking, an indisputable and undisputed intellect of our time, voices concern about "calling out" to the Extraterrestrial. Why? Well, they might come calling.
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What's implied by that, just based on our own history as it pertains to "colliding cultures"?  There's reason to be unsettled, eh? Consider Spain colliding with the Aztecs... Cortez ate their heads.
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Still?
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For my part, Stephen Hawking may make too many presumptions about stuff to be open to something else, eh? Things just aren't as hard and fast as he would apparently have them. See, and lately, stuff's just not adding up conclusively in the physicist's world, just to start. The closer they look into the center of things the more unspeakably insane things seem to get.  The microcosm reflects the macrocosm in miniature and we see again that all that is above is as all that is below ad infinitum...
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Humankind will not be the final "measure of all things," and I suspect never was or meant to be.  Couldn't be!  The universe is bigger than we knew and getting bigger all the time.  It looms and yawns with gravid potential to the point of risking fatality just a result of regarding the outrageous and stupendous astonishment of same. I say true.
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This is something the self-honest person must know at a cellular level.  All hubris is unjustified. Humility, not arrogance, is the key to the kingdom. Why, if we had a real hair of humility on our ass we'd already be colonizing the asteroid belt... I digress.
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No, I'd have to inquire if the "Standards of evidence" the good doctor alludes to are not remotely useful apart from the way he assigns their status as "never questioned holy grail"! In anyone else that would be taken for juvenile hero worship. Immature!
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Do we adhere to real science below the auspices of the good Doctor above? Are we doing our due diligence to fain to pronounce "a Shit from a Shinola," or the other blurted admonishment regarding that other shallow intimation, "Common Sense"! Common sense might be contested precisely because it is "Common" and based on 5 inadequate "senses" leavened by increasingly dodgy cultural "filters."  No real bedrock here.
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"Common Sense?" Yeah, right. Unfortunately, the evolving reality set we all endure demands a little more imaginative discernment than merely determining between "shit and shinola."
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"Rules Of Evidence" Now there's a squirty laugh! Let me explain.
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"Rules of evidence" are useless until all agree on the "rules" and are even willing to "accept" the evidence. There might be a dearth of that. Otherwise, it is just a turgid mantra of authority appeal and fallacy in dick-waving debate. What's another one?
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Occam's razor. Excessive worry about offending Occam sometimes provides for more hindrance to enlightenment than help, I've come to believe. Occam does not rule out complicating the hypothesis, just doing it without necessity. The simplest solution is not always the solution of needs. What's another?
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Logic? Ok. Remembering we're all aware of observed phenomena defying _all_ logic... how reliable is the logic defined? Is there an end edge to logic?  ...Can't think entirely in Newton since Einstein and present can't think entirely in Einstein. What's another?
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The Scientific Method... Sure! Though it remains; the representatives of the scientific mainstream would set themselves up as the default arbiter of that which they will not even deign to investigate! That's science?!?
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Another... "Psych 101," as in an appellation to adhere to same. Those are sneer quotes, oh yes.
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Never has such a conflicted morass of cobbled conjecture and variegated abomination tried to pass itself off as even the softest of soft sciences. Still, if we really wanted to redress a "psychological aspect" of things we could actually explore the mechanisms of the hostile, deconstructive, and maladaptive outlooks fueled by toxic "religious assumptions" and canted by employee "abandonment issues," unadmitted in agenda-pursuant "unconscious and even conscious projections," disingenuous "passive-aggressive thought patterns" facilitating authoritarian patterns, and finally the turbid psychopathy of the unbridled ego... One begins to see how dark and twisted psychology must be when it, for example, is allied with pharmaceutical companies drugging millions of our children into pecuniary sub-sentience and used to further manipulate an increasingly gullible public at the behest of short-term corporate interests! Psychology 101! We've all our answers there, you betcha! Not.
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See ...been all over the "common sense," the "rules of evidence," the "conventional wisdom," the "logic," and the "scientific method," good tools all... when used consistently, rationally, responsibly, and reasonably...  but they're too often not used in this manner and so are not the holy grail with which one might  would beat his "opposition" over the head to less than noble academic ends. Perhaps our lettered miscreant has some deep seated need to be angered when someone won't queue right up to validate his tedious little world view or pompous scientistic faith, eh? 
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That's our planet, barely authoritative I sense, reader, but oppressively, if unconsciously, authoritarian... ...And I'll bet its denizens  feel themselves a crown of all creation. 
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Closing–I don't know how anyone can read Dolan, Feschino, Hastings, or Friedman et sig al and remain on the two-color klasskurtxian side of the aisle, or even on the fence. Our ego is the barrier to our imaginations and the limit of our growth?  We're not alone in all likelihood. We might embrace that given we are served even where we're wrong.  It would unite us at the least.
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It remains: if they are still anything like us? They will eat our heads. That's ironic, eh? Maybe that's Hawking's concern. 
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They can be better; however, as we could be, and we can hope that humanity avoids its karma awhile longer.
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