notes 4 today: 2016-12-09 (Absolute Power Corrupts?; White Supremacy Overstated?; Dreaming Waking Sequencing; Immanent Critique Despite No Imminent Critique of Passive Podcast Listening)

title: Absolute Power Corrupts?

In contrast to the saying “absolute power corrupts absolutely”, I think there would be more counter-examples than examples of this phenomenon happening but for history’s inability to grasp all of the past. More often then not there were men and women who stood at the brink of great power and nobly walked away from it. These un-famous people would not be recalled when doing a tally to find principles such as “power corrupts”, but I think they are a great lesson that there isn’t an inevitability that we will always be sought to be dominated over, and that there are many more unknown and unspoken heroes than we could possibly count. The human will towards domination is not endemic, it is merely cultural, especially in western culture which has seen itself rise, but it is failing as we speak, perhaps giving more credence to the idea put forth here. The pronoia more often than not overwhelms and puts forth a flood of decency rather than allowing paranoia to surface and spur one on to despotism, for lust of power and fear of others.

title: White Supremacy Overstated? (meme)

0008 - Pride, Nationalism, or Supremacy.jpg

Note on meme: I understand that this is a controversial meme and runs in the face of so many of the fears (and I myself am a white male, so am I perhaps under-sensitized to the threat? Quite possibly!). However, I do feel the fears are stoked by other fascistic tending groups, that for lack of a better word I will call “political correctness fascists”. Evidence of their power are my reservations in even posting this timely meme. It is true that just one white supremacist armed with a gun is a threat to many many lives, as has been proven, and I abhor the weapon/culture more than the misguided person who was able to access it. But all things considered, their “white supremacy” culture isn’t so grand and so mobile yet to persuade the other 99.9% voters of Trump—only a minority of whom might even have “white pride”—in to the radical stance of white supremacy. They are an economically poor and impotent group unless their foes, and those that would use them as a ruse, keep giving them negative empowerment, negative attention, and galvanize more to join them. This certainly will happen if there is a great antagonistic force to meet the people who come out to support Trump’s inauguration.

title: Dreaming Waking Sequencing

A phenomenon worth noting for its implications on the very foundations of how temporality is understood is the confused causal/consequential ordering of dreams and immediate waking. When I have dreams I remember really well, I am actually in the dream experiencing it fully in a way comparable to my waking conscious usually only when I awake what appears to be soon after the time of my entering that level of consciousness in the dream. To put it differently, the dreams that I only get conscious access to as they unfold (rather than just mere remembering of the dream) are the dreams that will end temporally close to my becoming awake, often because of some external stimuli such as a noise from outside my apartment. It seems that for me to be consciously experiencing in my dream, it must be determined by something happening in the future (backwards influencing causality). There are other explanations such as I was already starting to wake up during the dream, and the fully awake state was already emerging, or criticisms that there isn’t banal causality anyways and there is more of a holism about this and all scenarios than a mere forward or backward causality. But being an intuitive type really trying to get at the honest fabric of the Universe, the former explanation does not feel particularly right, and the criticism, albeit possibly true, is perhaps too vaguely formulated.

title: Immanent Critique Despite No Imminent Critique of Passive Podcast Listening

Podcasts specifically—but all radio shows and extrapolating to large in vivo forums where it is not culturally expected for responses to be made to a speaker—put a person’s critical faculties at bay because of the very structure of the one-way communication. The dynamic is akin in many regards to deterrence theory (and also somehow similar to the dream-wake disordering mentioned in the note above), whereby the lack of an ability to follow through with the critical action puts to rest even the generation of the critical precursors in thought: one does not gather arrows when the bow is broke. People listen very passively, and allow the speaker to wiggle deeply in to their enduring thinking processes. Later on they will be propagating the ideas, saying to a friend “I forgot where I heard, but…”. The scientist in me (that has wiggled in to me) has the hypothesis that a brain scan would show different or less brain activity in a person who has on earbuds listening to a podcast versus a person who has on earbuds and is listening to a phone call where a potential vocal reply is lurking in their call’s future.

Radio and podcast listeners are generally very open to new ideas and thoughts anyways, which is why they are seeking the thoughts and ideas of others to begin with, but I think ultimately they allow themselves to be many more degrees open than they would be comfortable with, without any say in the matter. Education can stray in to miseducation easily enough.


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