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Comment Re:social experiments (Score 1) 306

I don't think it presumes a lack of free will. I think it presumes that a very small percentage of young people, in certain situations and with certain preconditioning, will tend toward activities that result in pregnancy. People can control themselves. Those young women that became pregnant, they controlled themselves in such a way that they became pregnant. Was that decision made easier by the stimulus they experienced? Well, it looks like in about 2-4% of them, the answer is yes.

One thing you need to remember is that you, and I, and everyone alive on this planet for that matter, comes from ancestors who all did one thing right, without fail, 100% of the time, each and every generation, going all the way back to the very first humans ever on this planet. That singular thing that every single one of your ancestors have in common? They procreated successfully and created offspring that procreated successfully.

Think about that for a moment and let's compare. What if every ancestor of a certain person from the beginning of human history was a murderer. How surprised would you be when that person committed a murder? Murder is, admittedly, a more complex behavior than sex so it is easy to argue that sex would be even more likely.

Also, it's not like there aren't tons of papers, experiments, and conjecture on the psycho-sexual motivations of humans. I have read that just about every human behavior has been related to or attributed to sexual drives by psychologist, psychiatrists, philosophers, and pundits. Everything from the drive to work and earn money and upwardly mobile social movement to speech patterns, vocabulary choice, and clothing. So it's not about whether or not people have free will, its about how people choose to use that free will, and how the world occurs to them when they make choices. Its about how people choose to have sex, when they will choose to have sex, and even why they choose to have sex.

I also seemed to notice a slippery slope in your writing that was coupled with a pejorative view of sex. If that is the case I fear we may have difficulty discussing this subject without knowing each other better. When discussing topics like sex there can be heavy filters and unspoken assumptions that lead to misunderstandings between people that are not aware of each others presuppositions. My goal in replying is not to say you are wrong, not is it to argue, but merely to say that any discussion of free will and sex needs to include the possibility that people will choose freely to have sex, and that those free choices are influenced by antecedents, stimuli, and experiences. It is true that acknowledging that people can control themselves is a good first step toward controlling that behavior. It is also just as important to realize what you are dealing with when considering human sexual activity. To deny that there are incredibly powerful underlying components to the human makeup that can be manipulated to increase the likelihood of procreation is shortsighted and leads to useless therapies like teaching abstinence, non-communication on sexual matters between children and parents, and ultimately sending children out into the world drastically under prepared and unsupported.

As humans we are, at our basest nature, violent sexual beings that don't always make choices that fit with the predominant behavior patterns we display to the world on a daily basis. Forgetting this leads to all sorts of problems. Like assuming that people will, with he proper training and teaching, decide to not rape an unconscious woman when she presents herself as such. I would love to live in a world where everyone could be taught proper self control and willpower, and would use those skills without fail. However, this is not the world we live in, and this is not who humans are. Drop a fully sedated and unconscious supermodel in front of 10000 young intoxicated men and regardless of how well you train them, some of them will rape her. Its not surprising, really. Remember those ancestors that I mentioned earlier, the ones that have been batting 1000 on the procreation front? Many of them were rapists, too.

Comment Re:social experiments (Score 4, Insightful) 306

Sounds plausible doesn't it? Show the young lady exactly what it is like to have a child, but without them having one. That should scare them into not wanting children, right?

However, when I read about this I thought "Aren't they risking priming and further activating all of the reproductive programming that women (and men) are subject to at that age?" I mean really, haven't we noticed yet that reproduction is a dirty trick that our biology plays on us? The drive to procreate is definitely not rational, in light of population pressure, economic well being, and lost opportunities swallowed up in the time it takes to raise young. But in spite of this it persists at a rate that is greater than necessary to sustain the species. What does that tell you? It tells me that reproductive motivations have root access to the wetware OS and are using that access to control the system subtly and pervasively.

Personally, I am surprised it isn't more effective at driving up pregnancy rates than it is.

Comment Re:Pierson's Puppeteers (Score 1) 680

So what you are saying is that I was correct initially when I stated I always thought it was going to be right-wing reactionaries, but somehow when I misinterpreted his statement and expanded my viewpoint to include both right and left wing reactionaries and generally anyone who places ideology above the sanctity of human life, all of a sudden I don't get it...

See you said: "It's going to be the right-wingers who kill you for threatening the environment."

I said: "Always envisioned right-wing reactionary militants as the catalyzing agent for population reduction wars."

See, pretty similar. Also notice that I don't discount that idea, only add to it the possibility of another source of social breakdown. Yet somehow you declare I don't get it. Whatevs, man.

Personally, with all the "denier" talk, its the politically active environmentalists with language constriction as part of their policies that I really worry about. They sound like religious people, and we all know how dangerous and destabilizing they are.

Comment Re:Pierson's Puppeteers (Score 1) 680

Populace means the people living in an area. You added the connotation of "the rich" and erroneously so. Unless you define "wealth enough to own a firearm" as "the rich."

I saw his statement as the government/army, not the electorate. Your interpretation makes more sense as I read it, though it is hard to push that through the stereotype filter of typical parlance on this site. I mean really, did he just say "when all the hillbillies in flyover states start caring about the environment..."? Seems implausible to me.

As for an armed populace, I would prefer that all men are armed. The tyranny of government is the enemy. That criminals fear those they would prey on is also desirable. That an armed society is a polite society is a pleasant side effect.

Comment Re:Pierson's Puppeteers (Score 1) 680

Not to be a smart ass, but a "population reduction war" is, by virtue of the words placed in that order, a war fought to reduce population. It is, I posit, a logical conjecture about a hypothetical future war. It's not too difficult to foresee something like this. Combine the prime problem of exponentially growing population pressure with the exacerbating factors of dwindling resources, kin selection, religious friction, ideological conflicts between neighbors, and energy-dense technology proliferation and you have the perfect ingredients for a return to our species roots as genocidal monsters.

A war fought for territory, or for honor, religion, or for ideology would be completely different than a "population reduction war." A "population reduction war" would be a war fought specifically to reduce the population on the Earth. Whether this ultimate goal is know or hidden from the participants is irrelevant. In a population reduction war killing the enemy's armed forces is not done to force compliance, depose the government leaders, or to gain territory. Killing the enemy would not be a means to an end in a war like this. Killing the enemy is the end. And, as such, the means would be different than in other wars. Combatants would not be the main targets, they would be tactical obstacles between you and the strategic goals of large populations of civilians.

Comment Re:Pierson's Puppeteers (Score 1) 680

Well then that's all we need! We have provided our decedents with more knowledge in this generation than all of our cumulative generations previous to this one. Conserving any resources is irrelevant!

Thanks for proving my point, again lol!

Seriously though, Leary and Wilson call inherited knowledge you are referring to the "time-binding semantic circuit" of human consciousness. It is an inalienable trait of being a human. Making a societal decision for conservation of resources for future generations is totally different than the automatic accumulation of human knowledge as a by product of language using monkeys playing with tools. It is even father afield from the results of reproductive pressures expressed in future generations that you refer to.

There really is no way to compare them. Its like comparing geology and satellites. Their Venn diagrams aren't even on the same plane.

Comment Re:Pierson's Puppeteers (Score 1) 680

Goes well with the old adage, "necessity is the mother of invention." Force our future generations into devising increasingly ingenious ways of staying ahead of the extinction curve. No one handed our distant Paleolithic ancestors a leg up, same goes for every generation since. This attitude served us well up to this point, in that we aren't dead yet..

Also goes along well with the "intelligence implies belligerence" adage, though as a cause of the intelligence. A harsher environment will lead to greater intelligence, which will, in turn, reinforce the behavior of molding our environment to our wishes. (Intentional digression) at a certain point I think that deliberate adaptation of our environment will reach a place of diminishing returns. Somewhere along that asymptotic curve it will become more cost and energy effective to deliberately modify the human element of the survival equation.

Not supporting his position per se. Just exploring the taste of that mind filter out loud here. What would I use as rationalization and ancillary support if I were to adopt that thought as valid. As always, even the most ludicrous shit can be justified through human "reasoning" and "logic."

Comment Re:Pierson's Puppeteers (Score 1) 680

Another argument is that sooner or later the men with guns are going to realize that the environment has to be protected. And then they will find that you muck up the numbers, and will have to be removed from the equation in order to make them come out correctly. Buh-bye!

Yikes! That's a wake up call right there. Always envisioned right-wing reactionary militants as the catalyzing agent for population reduction wars. Just goes to show that any authoritarian agents with power-centric ideologies they value above the sanctity of human life are dangerous as fuck.

And yet another reason for an armed populace.

Comment Re:Criminal (Score 3, Insightful) 526

This. Soooo much this. And, if you squint hard enough most of the pejorative monikers for one candidate can be interchanged with at least one or two others.

Makes me want a shorter election cycle for president with a corresponding shorter term. Flush the system quicker, limit the damage, burn through the current chaff and get some damn wheat. Only problem is the people we elect to the "feeder" offices (like governor, etc) are just as tainted and tarnished as the crop of whackjobs we fielded this time. And if Trump is indicative in the slightest of our private sector offerings for the position of POTUS our American experiment is well and truly over.

The worst part is that there are so many die-hard fans of these imbeciles. Watching large swaths of the electorate fawn over these incredibly flawed humans has somehow further degraded my already rock bottom apprehension of the American public. It seems the worse the candidate the more the people voting for them have to overcompensate with fervor and gusto for their candidate du jour. Its sickening to observe.

I hate being resigned and cynical, its so gauche. Seems the only other options are to revel in the embarrassing spectacle that is the American political system, or actively contribute to its downfall. With the latter I used to think that armed uprising was the only way to bring down this country. Now it looks like pulling a voting lever will do the job quite thoroughly. You don't even have to worry about messing it up, any one will do.

Comment Re:Use T-mobile at your own risk (Score 1) 194

Agreed on all fronts, with the exception of it being a "deal" to turn off international call access.

Most cell companies will turn off/on international calling access at the customer's request. In fact, I recall one of my associates had to have their international service turned on by T-mobile when we traveled to Mexico for a business trip. This was subsequent to the experience I related in the previous post. Boy did I have a nice rant about that. Kind of lost my shit in the hotel bar for a few.

I surmise that turning off international calling is a simple customer service request, provided you already have existing service. My guess is that in all the hurry to take my money they dropped the ball. Or, maybe the service was initially turned off but was reinstated when I switched phones, renewed my plan, etc.

Lastly, I will relate a quote from a friend of mine which describes the nature and culture of cell phone carriers. He worked in Canada for a major cell company at the time:

I knew it was time for me to look for a new job when I told a customer "I don't see what your son's leukemia has to do with you not paying your cell phone bill."

Comment Use T-mobile at your own risk (Score 3, Interesting) 194

It was years ago when I signed up for T-mobile. They described my plan and said it included, among other things, international calling. I told them specifically "I don't need, nor will I ever use international calling. Remove that and I will sign up for your service." They said "no problem!" and I got their phone service.

Fast forward 4 years and my phone was stolen. I was having a great time that weekend at the downtown high-rise apartment of an amazingly generous and affluent acquaintance with quite a few other friends and acquaintances. Being preoccupied I did not notice the phone was missing for 2 days. Once I returned home and realized it was well and truly gone I contacted T-mobile. The conversation went like this.

Me: "Hi my phone was stolen."

T-mobile: "I see. Looks like you ran up over $900 in calls to Guatemala and Honduras over the weekend."

Me: "How can that be? I told you when I signed up for service that I would only sign up if you disabled international calling."

T-mobile: "Hmmm. Let me check. Oh, I see it here in the notes. Let me get you with a supervisor that can help you with that."

T-mobile supervisor: "Hello, since you have been a good customer we are graciously offering to discount your international calls you made by $50 if you pay in full over the phone right now."

Me: "Your associate just confirmed that I requested international calling turned off on my phone as a condition of purchasing your service, how are there international calls made on my phone and how am I responsible for that?"

T-mobile supervisor: "Your records do not show that. I can accept your credit card."

me: "...."

On subsequent calls with them they called my wife a liar. They called me a liar. They accused me of giving the phone to someone else to use, charging that person cash, and then attempting to refute the charges. They were rude, intentionally offensive, and intentionally provocative. In retrospect, I realize they did everything they could to keep me off balance and upset.

I was young and stupid and didn't contact a lawyer, go to small claims court, etc. I just didn't pay them anything, ever and considered strongly the use of fire to extract recompense for my time and frustration. Were this to happen to me today I would have someone's ass, it would be posted on the Consumerist instantly, there would be recorded conversations of them doing this, and they would be looking at a lawsuit.

TL;DR: My recommendation, no matter what they offer you, don't ever enter into a contract with T-mobile and never use them for anything more than a place to store rancid feces.

Comment Re:Criminal status is not a race. (Score 1) 108

My grandfather was a racist by some metrics: he used the "N" word on occasion, he had a country accent, he told the occasional off color joke about race or foreigners, he was from the deep South. And, of course, he was white, the most damning of traits to some.

He also told all of his grandchildren that if our government forced intermarrying between races our country would be drastically better off in three generations. He encouraged us to take matters into our own hands on this front.

Sometimes I envision a day when the people of the US have through reproduction thoroughly eradicated the gross physical traits that humans identify as race. I like to imagine what our world would look like without race as a dividing factor. When no one is claiming harm to their ancestors, when no one is feeling guilty about what their ancestors did, because they all share the same ancestors. What would that open up as a possibility?

Call him a racist if you want, but grandpa was a conscientious and intelligent old racist.

Comment Re:Why do you speak on behalf of the rest of socie (Score 1) 272

I have been wrestling with this quandary recently. Illegal activities performed by unknown perpetrators (Yes they are still unknown, no we don't know for sure they are Russians, put down the Kool Aid) have resulted in the first inkling of transparency the American people have seen from their government and their government officials in a long time. I'm a law-and-order kind of guy on most subjects. This concerns me greatly.

What has allowed me to sleep is simple. Whoever is making these leaks is acting not as an adversary, but an advocate. Their actions are those of an advocate of the people, not the government. Sadly, but truthfully, it is increasingly easy to draw the line between the government and the people, as our government treats the people like an enemy. Greater transparency, unveiling deception, getting emails into the public record before they can be deleted (Lois Lerner/IRS, Hillary, etc.) seems to be the only way the people can be assured that the truth is available after the fallout of a scandal. And it may be the only way to hold our government accountable for any illegal actions they perform.

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