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Comment: Re:Why are people bullying? (Score 2) 343

You've got a point (I agree) about the monotheistic religions: they are inherently divisive.

Of course, before that, people divided according to blood ties, clans, tribes, etc., so monotheism was in a way an improvement... 2500 years ago, if resources were scarce and tribes were fighting. (If you're on Pandora and the next tribe is a whole forest away, with plenty of luscious food available for all, fine, stay in tribes).

But today we need so much more than, my group is going to Heaven and yours is inferior and going to Hell.

You can keep the afterlife, you can keep notions of eternal consciousness transcending material existence, you can keep the notion of higher wisdom, you can keep flying saucers and ghosts and all that, you can keep reincarnation, you just need to admit all humans equally to your club. Whether in this life or the next, you'd want ALL humans to be treated fairly and equally, and none of this, "we are the chosen ones, y'all are heathens, kaffirs, fallen", whatever.

Maybe you're a sentience which exists forever, OK, so what, you are here now, be nice to people equally.

Comment: Progress but... (Score 4, Interesting) 343

When people migrate from a small village to the city, they can't go on treating strangers with contempt and fear, instead, they have to learn to live being surrounded by thousands of strangers everyday. There is some suggestion that it's the move to cities which has something to do with the civilising process (ie. a reduction in common violence), although it also has its own kinds of stresses.

Likewise, the internet allows people to interact across cities and nations and with thousands of people and frequently, and so it may be that it is a new challenge to our social behaviour. It isn't that cell phones are the problem, it may just be that the new complexity of a wider-connected environment means people have to learn new ways of dealing with it, mainly because everyone is going to be a victim to it, so everyone will need to start extending their empathy much further, not just to their village neighbour, not just the the stranger on the city bus next to you, but to "abstract" "avatars", human beings, out there. And also learn new skills for coping.

Comment: Re:Politicians will be stupid but scientists/techn (Score 1) 356

by Bongo (#49240247) Attached to: New Solar Capacity Beats Coal and Wind, Again

That is interesting. But I meant cars as something which will be an extra demand for clean electricity, at a time when people are burning coal for their home energy needs. Can you both make the air conditioning clean and your car? And that's USA where you have lots of space.

Comment: Re:Politicians will be stupid but scientists/techn (Score 2) 356

by Bongo (#49239915) Attached to: New Solar Capacity Beats Coal and Wind, Again

The public largely rejected nuclear, yet reality says all those electric cars will need to plug into something.

Nuclear isn't called nuclear anymore. It is called "broad sustainable energy mix". The public will see windfarms and solar, because they take up space, and meanwhile here and there, new nuclear will quietly be built, and if by then anyone objects, they can cite urgent need to reduce emissions, given we've already built so much wind and solar and yet, oddly, we still have a ways to go to reach the targets.

There are basically two sides to the eco movement. The 70s folk who grew up reading The Ecologist and concluded humanity is a cancer on the planet. Meanwhile the other lot are basically, yeah we want better cleaner lifestyles, but we still want a lifestyle, with jobs and housing and children, with convenience and growth, with better lives for everyone.

Various planning restrictions are being eased to make windfarms possible, on the basis that the environmental targets are urgent and more important. That same workaround can be applied to nuclear. The way to get more nuclear is to never mention the word.

In the meantime, gas is there to make up for the variability in solar and wind. Once everyone wants to plug in their car to charge, everybody will want "sustainable energy".

Comment: Re:Reopen the accounts (Score 1) 533

"Islam" needs to split and differentiate. The extremists want to claim their Islam is the only true Islam, and the only valid Islam, hence the killing of apostates and various other Islamic groups and people who happen to be on their hit list. But because Islam is still very conservative, it doesn't have that sense of self-reflection and self-criticism, where it stands outside itself and says, you know what, this monotheistic One True Way puritanical thing we conservative types like so much, is bullshit, it doesn't work in practice. The sooner Islam acknowledges in its theology that the puritanical Truth it clings to is a fiction, because in reality, nobody agrees on the one true doctrine, in reality, people are all different, then the sooner young "heroes" in search of adventure and militancy, can stop using Islam as a militant pretext, and stop dragging ordinary people into it, ie. the regular people who happen to be born in to Muslim or South Asian or whatever cultures. The trouble is, the Iranian and Saudi leadership both base their authority on Islam, and conservatively cling to it, cling to the notion that Islam is Pure and therefore, their leaders are right and pure and just. And instead of it simply causing a bit of cognitive dissonance, it has festered to the point that they now have ISIL. As a 15th Century European theologian remarked as he watched two holy armies attack each other on the field, "well, they can't both be right." So criticising and attacking Islam is necessary to get people to start to decide which Islamic version they want to be part of. If doing this causes some small minority to decide their favourite version is the ISIL one, then so be it. The sooner Islam fragments into multiple versions, the sooner the majority can stop sleepwalking into supporting laws which kill apostates and blasphemers, ie. stop the moderate majority finding themselves siding with the extremists simply because they all want to perpetuate the myth that Islam is one true thing, and only one version can exist, thus obliterating the various minority versions who are often the more liberal sects.

Comment: Re:We Need A New FDA Warning Label (Score 1) 180

by Bongo (#49027617) Attached to: US Gov't To Withdraw Food Warnings About Dietary Cholesterol

So people can try a diet/lifestyle for themselves and see how it goes, being sceptical but still trying it. Some people try LCHF and become fans of it. Some become vegans and become fans of it. The hard part is that it takes decades to figure out if it works for you, and even then you can't be sure. People say, oh I'm vegan and feel amazingly healthy... at the age of 30. Yeah, but how will it work out for you in 30 years' time? Some people run marathons to lose weight, and after their 30th marathon they are still overweight and say, well, obviously I need to run a few more! Personally I tried LCHF and found unexpected good results (emotionally, mental focus, energy levels, etc. and weight). But that's my impression of my experience of what seems to work for me, and YMMV.

Comment: Re:Unsettling science (Score 1) 180

by Bongo (#49027601) Attached to: US Gov't To Withdraw Food Warnings About Dietary Cholesterol

Dr. Melik: This morning for breakfast he requested something called "wheat germ, organic honey and tiger's milk."

Dr. Aragon: [chuckling] Oh, yes. Those are the charmed substances that some years ago were thought to contain life-preserving properties.

Dr. Melik: You mean there was no deep fat? No steak or cream pies or... hot fudge?

Dr. Aragon: Those were thought to be unhealthy... precisely the opposite of what we now know to be true.

Comment: Re:Ban censorship, except the stuff that offends m (Score 1) 228

by Bongo (#48924073) Attached to: Facebook Censoring Images of the Prophet Muhammad In Turkey

Well many of these regimes talk about free speech as if it was a "Western" thing, but it only happened to arise there.

Free speech is a universal principle, and the reason it is universal is that the individual human being is not a Moslem or an American or Chinese, he or she is a human being. The individual. And that's who has the rights. This is why Mullahs or Bishops shouldn't be able to dictate what you say.

Then, again considering all people across the planet, what things are universally limits on free speech? Well, children, across the world, need to grow up in a safe environment and likewise, adults, all over the world, don't want to be caused to stampede out of a cinema, and so on.

Modernity is universal, a principle discovered in certain countries, but you don't hear anyone claim that Islam can't be taught in Germany because it was invented in Arabia. No, they pretend to universal influence also. So the principles have to work for everyone, and that means, criticising those who try to impose pre-modern standards onto the modern world.

Comment: Re:Capable, sure (Score 3, Insightful) 329

Also, the interpretation step performed by the first two is considered a corruption.

The third is purest and best and absolute, whilst the first two are seen as corrupted.

That's why they can use the same god but still trump all the rest.

So the ideal is, never allow Islam to be corrupted, never, by anything or anyone. Never allow reinterpretation or criticism.

What good is a ticket to the good life, if you can't find the entrance?

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