Archive for power

US Security Commission Plans

Posted in Commercial Corporations, Ethics & Morals, Military, news with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 25, 2020 by Drogo

Corporate Intelligence Agency Plans to Increase US Automation in 2020

Original SCOD awareness of this information was from a Jimmy Dore video with Whitney Webb about government plans for technological control (tyranny) from National Security Committee on Artificial Intelligence (NSCAI) 2019 documents released by FOIA. 

NSCAI Home Website: “The National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence was formally established in August 2018 by the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2019. The Commission’s members were appointed in October and November 2018. In March 2019, the Commissioners first assembled to receive orientation information and briefings from the White House, Department of Defense, Department of Commerce, and various agencies in the U.S. Intelligence Community. The Commission began its substantive work of reviewing artificial intelligence advances and associated technologies after the initial meeting. There are fifteen Commissioners appointed to the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence. Of the fifteen Commissioners, twelve were appointed by members of Congress, two were appointed by the Secretary of Defense, and one was appointed by the Secretary of Commerce. ” 

 

Summary of Agency information: 

According to the official documents of the NSCAI, they believe the US Government needs to be more competitive with China by implementing AI more. In order to meet their goals, events like the ‘Covid Crisis Pandemic’ are useful to force implementations using emergency powers. Replacing workers with AI would be much harder, without substantial public support.

National Defense Magazine helped explain that the NSCAI “was tasked by Congress to research ways to advance the development of AI for national security and defense purposes”. “We really worked on what we consider to be the most urgent challenges … and what we thought might be the most transformative opportunities presented by AI for national security,” – said chairman Work. “Adopting AI-enabled systems responsibly, rapidly and at scale will allow national security organizations to understand and execute their missions faster,” the study said. “It will change the way we defend America; how we deter adversaries; how intelligence agencies make sense of the world; and how we fight.” 

AI technology also poses two main threats: what an adversary could do by hacking us, and accidents without safeguards, the report said. Other threats include: the erosion of U.S. military advantage; risks to strategic stability; the diffusion of AI capabilities; disinformation and the undermining of the nation’s democratic system; erosion of individual privacy and civil liberties; accelerated cyber attacks; new techniques that could open up vulnerabilities; and accidents, the report said. Our government must work to avoid a future where “AI contributes to a world of greater centralized control; empowers authoritarianism; is utilized as an instrument to repress dissent and impose conformity; destroys truth and trust within societies and between states; and is employed in reckless, irresponsible and unethical ways,” the study added.

The commission is considering 7 basic principles as recommendations, including: 1. global leadership in AI; 2. adopting artificial intelligence for defense and security purposes; 3. building a shared sense of responsibility for the welfare and security of the American people between the private sector and government; 4. the importance of people; 5. the preservation of free inquiry; 6. the compatibility of ethics and strategic necessity; and 7. the importance of maintaining the United States’ values and rules of law in its employment of AI, according to the report.

Despite the transformative potential of artificial intelligence, the U.S. government is not making enough investments in the technology, the report said. “Federal R&D funding for AI has not kept pace with the revolutionary potential it holds or with aggressive investments by competitors. Investments that are multiple times greater than current levels are needed,” the study said.

Some of the related tactics proposed include AI transportation control to replace private vehicles, citizen tracking and monitoring, drones in every neighborhood, industrial automation to increase reduction of workers, AI medicine delivery to replace private doctors, and other civil rights issues.

If you would like to make an inquiry to the Commission, please email: inquiry@nscai.gov.

The NSCAI includes big corporate members from Google and CIA affiliate companies. AI controls many aspects of computers, robotics, social media, and surveillance systems. 

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Related documents and links:

FB Video reading

Military Industrial Complex  – Fascism

US Intelligence Agencies

Rockefeller Foundation GBN Report: ‘Scenarios for the Future of Technology and International Development’

History of General Electric Company

Posted in Commercial Corporations, History, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on April 16, 2020 by Drogo

During the late 1800’s several electric companies existed. Thomas Edison the ‘Wizard of Menlo Park’ was ruthlessly competitive in the marketing of his electrical inventions, and his work was further driven by corporate financing.  General Electric was formed through the 1892 merger of ‘Edison General Electric Company’ of NY, and ‘Thomson-Houston Electric Company’ of Mass, with the support of Drexel Morgan Company. By 1900 GE had other wizards working on transformers for electrical transmission. In 1911 GE was making lamps. In 1927 GE began broadcasting television. In 1930 GE was charged with antitrust violations and divested from RCA & NBC radio. In 1959 GE was accused of promoting the largest illegal cartel to maintain artificially high prices; and 29 companies and 45 executives were convicted. In later decades GE produced electrical generators and computing. In 1985 GE reacquired RCA & NBC, only to sell them again in 2013 to Comcast. Since the 2000s GE has worked with Enron, GXS, Universal, Genpact, Smiths Aerospace, Vetco, Hyrdil, and Comcast; among other companies.

Between 1996 to 2002 GE reached a stock climax of $58, and has had only two increasingly lesser peaks since then ($41 and $31). The 3 great diminishing waves between 1996 to 2020 have shown a decline in stock, but with many smaller monthly waves. The 3 largest lows in the waves were $24 in 2002, $8 in 2009, and $7 in 2019. In 2014 GE partnered with collaborative design company Quirky to announce its smart LED bulb called Link. In 2017 Jeff Immelt retired and stock went up a bit. In 2018 GE was the Fortune 500 18th largest firm by gross profit.

In 2005 GE launched its “Ecomagination” initiative to position itself as a “green” company. ‘GE Renewable Energy’ is a division of General Electric based in Paris, France; focusing on production of energy from renewable sources. Its portfolio of products includes wind (onshore and offshore), hydroelectric and solar (concentrated and photovoltaic) power generating solutions. Founded in 2015, GE RE makes about 10 billion in gross profits.

The main reason stock has stayed so low since 2019, is massive debt topped with the fraud accusation by investigative journalist Markopolos alleging $38 billion in accounting fraud. Investors seem to have lost confidence in GE. Stock holders are requesting a third party CEO be brought in, presumably to clean house while the debt is paid off. 

GE’s primary business divisions are: Additive, Aviation, Capital, Digital, Healthcare, Lighting, Power, Renewable Energy, and Global Research. GE has created massive pollution and toxic waste, on par with other major contributors like oil companies. The nuclear reactors involved in the 2011 crisis at ‘Fukushima I’ in Japan were GE designs; not only were faults known decades earlier, but the US still uses that model at some stations.

One Faith To Rule Them All

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization, Ethics & Morals, Legal / Laws, Pagan, Religions, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on April 4, 2020 by Drogo

Pagan & Christian Empire History

An essay on the radical problems of ‘one faith’ conservatism from Pagan Roman Empire to Christian Roman Catholic legacy which forms modern Capitalist Empire. 

 

When the world was mostly Pagan, conservative (fundamentalist) radicals persecuted minor cults like Christians; then when Christianity became dominant they treated all other religions the way that Romans treated rebel cults (Barbarian mercenaries had become Christianized, but still sacked Rome and killed in the name of the Roman Catholic Church), due to force dominance ‘might is right’ theory so prevalent in Patriarchy. Oligarchical conservatives in any culture feed hatred of ‘the other’ with ‘we are the best’ nationalism or dogma. It is therefore up to the main-stream led by radical liberals to deconstruct the ‘change is bad’ narrative perpetually as progress is made between cultures due to marriages, migration, trade, and tourism. The most popular changes tend to become the new cultural norms, social conventions, and eventually laws (this is why liberals tend to like democracy, and conservatives prefer oligarchy).

Little is known historically for sure about Jesus and Peter. Saint Peter is said to have helped to found the early basilica congregations in Rome, but fires destroyed most evidence and records. Unlike most religions in the Roman Empire, Christianity required its adherents to renounce all other gods, a practice adopted from Judaism. This radical ‘my god is the only one for everyone’ syndrome that unifies for hierarchical monopoly is baked into Judaism and Christianity doctrine, and is dominant rather than more peaceful Pagan unity which would be ‘some of our gods are so similar, we might share the same universe with different names for different aspects’. Christian refusal to join pagan celebrations meant they were unable to participate in much of public life, which caused non-Christians–including government authorities–to fear that the Christians were angering the gods and thereby threatening the peace and prosperity of the Empire. In addition, the peculiar intimacy of Christian society and its secrecy about its religious practices spawned rumors that Christians were guilty of incest and cannibalism; the resulting persecutions, although usually local and sporadic, were a defining feature of Christian self-understanding. Most of the fanatical dogmatic oligarchy of formal Christianity did not come from Jesus or Peter, but Saint Paul who was not even an original disciple apostle, but a Roman Jewish ‘ICE Agent’ who arrested and persecuted Jewish-Christians, who ‘saw the light’ and now wanted to tell everyone how to be a Christian, and for his radical sedition became a state criminal and spent years under arrest for civil disobedience, mainly trying to Romanize Christians to increase conversions by minimizing Jewish rituals like circumcision. Later Roman Christianity became more based on Paul than on the more communal aspects of Jesus and his original disciples, which were lost in translation to the main-stream audience who conformed to the conventions of empire more than helping the poor.

A series of more centrally organized persecutions of Christians emerged after the ‘Great Fire’ of 64 which Nero blamed on Christians, and continued into the late 3rd century, when emperors decreed that the Empire’s military, political, and economic crises were caused by gods angry at the evil Christians who denied the official state religious power (they chose to ‘take a knee’). All residents were ordered to give sacrifices or be punished. Jews were exempted as long as they paid the Jewish Tax. Estimates of the number of Christians who were executed ranges from a few hundred to 50,000. Many fled or renounced their beliefs. Disagreements over what role, if any, these apostates should have in the Church led to the Donatist and Novatianist schisms.

Christianity spread throughout the early Roman Empire, despite persecutions due to conflicts with the pagan state religion. Emperor Constantine legalized the practice of Christianity in 313 (Edict of Milan), and it became the state religion in 380. Many Germanic barbarians (400-500 AD) had previously adopted Arian Christianity as Roman Mercenaries, eventually adopted Catholicism to ally themselves with the papacy and monasteries. By the time of Constantine, the state of apocalyptic expectation must have worn rather thin (every year after Christ was to be Armageddon). The imminent coming of Christ, expectation of the Last Day on this mortal sinful earth constituted radical social danger. The spirit schism of the old Jewish law being so widely separated from new Christian mysticism (including all the gnostic cults), “was not so very different from the Roman spirit itself” (Weil), with all the Roman sects and cults within the Pagan pantheon and the Republic vs Empire schism. Rome could come to terms with the Jewish-Christian God, perhaps because it fit with the uncompromising empire model which was needed to maintain taxation obedience, if not martial law.

 One faith or state monopoly is too powerful for one entity to wield over all humanity, no matter how benevolent or wise they are. The artificial ‘ring’ of central authority must be broken, to allow for more democracy and at least better representation. The rebel fellowship that fights the power will be flawed, and when they take power in the vacuum of revolution, they must admit responsibility for the flaws and put themselves on trial by seeking council from those who want peace, love, and sharing the most.

Socrates, Jesus, & MLK

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization, Ethics & Morals, History, Memorials / Obituaries / Epitaphs, Military, Philosophy, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on January 29, 2020 by Drogo

Social Martyrs of History – Socrates, Jesus, & MLK 

Remembering Leaders Who Risked Their Lives for Civil Rights

 

For all the famous leaders there are countless common martyrs who sacrificed their health and well being for the sake of others and the pursuit of virtuous truth. In remembering the lives of great figures we know about, we can also reflect on their human flaws or imperfect traits.

The main three figures I want to talk about are Socrates Jesus and Martin Luther King Junior. The stories of Socrates, Jesus, and MLK (Martin Luther King Jr.) will always be relevant so long as there is an ambitious and hungry military, supported by plutocrats and a population that mocks peace and philosophy. Their stories are very similar, except that MLK wanted to actually have political change. They were despised by those in power for raising too many questions, and they were put to death for their influence. I will also mention Simon Bolivar and Martin Luther of the Protestant Reformation in reference to the topics, although they were not put to death by authorities. These are figures which were influential obviously in the annals of history, but more importantly they were people who questioned civilization. They bothered society as social gadflies. Simon Bolivar was more of a political-military leader and I don’t really know his biography so I’m not going to talk much about him; but he is largely unknown in North America although a local town is named for him.

Socrates (circa 400 BC) was a veteran and a retired stone-mason, who taught young men of Athens philosophy for free (unlike the Sophists who charged to teach legal rhetoric). Socrates was such a public nuisance about asking questions, that he was written into theater comedy plays as a ‘clownish fool’. Religion, plays, and politics were all wrapped up in each other as democracy allows; although with the growth of population these extensions became more specialized fields over time. Cultural systems were blended as they are now actually; but we tend to want to try to keep social functions separate. We might say “I don’t want to talk about politics”, but meanwhile our money is spent to kill people; and issues in politics, religion, and entertainment cross-over. However even back in ancient Athens people would say “Why are you asking me these stupid questions? I’ve got business to do, excuse me, but get away.” Socrates would insist on asking people what they knew about their business, life in general, and whether that applied to politics.

Socrates was getting people thinking, and the plutocratic military establishment did not appreciate it. Their industrial complex may not have been like factories with our modern mechanized technology; but there were workshops making weapons and leaders of armies who wanted to boss soldiers around, conquer other people, and get rich as an official leader. Athens had been at war with its neighbors, and had seen massive defeats. Ironically during a period that had despotism and imperialism, it was their democracy that put Socrates to death (see Plato’s writings).

One of the perennial problems of democracy is that it gets tricked by the oligarchy into voting against worker interests, to favor conservative benefits for the few. There will always be some people that want to hurt and bully others to extract resources and wealth from them, and selfishly take it as their personal property. War culture is part of male patriarchy for sure, and the ethics of that ‘might is right’ domination is now being questioned more than ever before by progressives. It took a long time for women to have civil rights in civilization. It took thousands of years for large countries to grant women the same power and influence that men were legally allowed. I am not sure why it took so long to recognize women as adults officially in public, they say it has to do with babies, muscles, and testosterone but this is not an essay on gender issues. My point is that many of us hope that democratic society is slowly becoming more compassionate every century, with a few massive steps back in some ways, some decades.

The problems of society were addressed by Socrates, Jesus, and MLK; and they were punished as enemies of the state. Socrates, Jesus, and MLK may have been peaceful, but they also threatened the establishment by wanting individuals to ask questions within the society. Philosophical questions threaten authoritarian control. Socrates bothering people in the market was stirring up the pot and getting people wondering “What is best? What do I know? What can I know?” We want to usually have will-power and self-esteem and confidence. We want to know that we have answers to problems. It was frightening for Greeks to think that they might not actually know how best to vote. They did not want to be blamed when they invaded somebody else; even when they got their asses handed to them and their soldiers maimed, crippled, and killed. Their most important leaders had told them that war was justified, so it must have been right; right? Who was this old foolish man to harass them with questions? So they put him on trial and sentenced him to death. 

Later Jesus came along from Galilee, Israel. So Jesus was Jewish, but he was questioning the laws defended by conservative Pharisees, Sadducees, King Herod, and of course the Imperial Roman overlords. These popular stories of Jesus are perhaps the most common myths in society today, although no remaining period records noticed him while he was alive. We certainly have Jesus around us almost every day, with churches on every road. We are constantly reminded of Jesus probably more than the other figures, but yet if we go into a church and ask Christians what it means to be Christian, it is really hard for them to answer.

Most Christians do not give up their wealth and follow the holy spirit. Jesus never said we should go to Church and worship him, instead his example was to live communally with friends and practice religious compassion. Modern Christians want their property and their capitalist profit; that’s how most of us live our lives. Most Christians would not ‘turn over tables’ even in metaphoric churches, because Fox News and other corporate media conditions them in their homes as consumers. Commercial propaganda keeps people silent about politicians who keep spending our money on weapons and taking us to war. What would Jesus do? Would Jesus spend more on the military than all other countries? I don’t think conservatives have asked that question enough; if they want to spend so liberally on authoritarian budgets, they are not progressive on social issues like Jesus was. My New Testament understanding of Jesus is that he was profoundly anti-establishment in mostly passive ways. Now yes he did proclaim (according to the Bible) that he was the ‘son of God’, but he also said that we are all the ‘children of God’. Jesus also didn’t put much stock into earthly class systems or elite nobility. Our ability to love each-other was most important to him, which meant loving our enemies as well as our neighbors, as well as our family, as well as ourselves.

The Emperor of Rome (coincidentally also son of a god) would have considered accounts of early christians much like how Nixon reacted to hippies, but with less interest or subtlety. The Kent State shooting and the MK-Ultra project were sensitive compared to the more formal crucifixions and arena events; although I expect there were many undocumented tactics used unofficially in the streets by Roman soldiers too. Sharing wealth of property and goods was crucial for Jesus and gang, in between healing the poor and not chasing profit. Authorities mocked that hippy rebel and his proclamations of peace and love as the king of the Jews, with the crown of thorns on his head and the procession of pain carrying the cross.

His lessons were about helping those less fortunate, rather than giving wealth to the rich who ‘earned it’. Ask the Jesus in your heart “who deserves help the most; those greedy hoarding wealth already, or those who could use some and will spend it?” Collective compassion flies in the face of corporate assholes like Trump and those who want to be selfishly ignorant because “god damn it we don’t give a f@ck.” Everyone knows that making martyrs who people later worship defeats the purpose of killing them; but cultural ignorance is perennial even among elites. Reflecting on past mistakes is weird while still doing them. We might feel it was stupid and cruel that those people in the past killed Socrates, Jesus, and MLK; and we’ve come such a long way like when the FBI says MLK was such a great guy historically, although we know their boss wrote that death threat to MLK and probably had him assassinated (if it wasn’t some other covert militant agency that most don’t hear about because they redact most of their official public documents when they actually do release information).

  • to be continued…

 

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The Problem with Taking Religion Seriously

Posted in Ethics & Morals, Religions, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 27, 2019 by Drogo

Christianity forced itself on me when i was a boy, and it constantly tries to get me to submit and sacrifice to the authority of its Churches, so I feel that I always have a right to speak out about it. 

Christianity cannot help itself, it is designed to convert others. When I am critical of Christianity I do it not as a native repelling an alien invader, but as a Christian who wants to try to be something more than what tradition and convention dictated. I am constantly reminded of inescapable antiquated social limits that I will always be contained inside by living in current US culture. We can all agree on some basic ethics and habits (like washing and sleeping and cleaning), but needing one book or a god to tell us is a bit juvenile.

Being able to resist and deconstruct Christian authority is important because it is insipid. Christianity by design gets into all aspects of culture, from churches to schools and governments. Based on the rebel family unit, the slave religion was devastating to the Roman Empire because people were peacefully protesting authority by resisting as sacrifices unwilling to function for the Empire. Rome of course solved this by adopting the slave religion as the state religion, and therefore to resist authority became Christian heresy. The Bible has several passages not only of arrogant egocentric God-level pride, but also dictates about spreading the word to the heathens, so it is constantly on a mission of conversion. If one chooses not to be a Christian in society for the past several hundred years, they must constantly be on guard and resist by every means possible, which means not only ignoring conventions, but also at times mocking the insanity of dogma. Although the Bible says that God is too jealous to be denied his power, joking about religion is certainly a good test of its power. 

This same problem of aggressive religious authority also applies to any fundamentalist religion. The problems of power are not confined to religion, but also apply to government in the form of conservative Nationalism. The Nazis did not need Jesus to act like the Popes of the Crusades.

Snobs Cry “Don’t Punish Success”

Posted in Commercial Corporations, Critical Commentary of Civilization, Ethics & Morals, Matras Quotes Tips, Music Reviews, news, Politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 29, 2019 by Drogo

I have heard the cries of the successfully wealthy and powerful, “Do not punish success.”; from the brilliant actor that satirizes Trump (Alec Baldwin), to the angry metal band that cut off their long hair in the name of maturity (Metallica). As a fan of both Baldwin and Metallica, I appreciate their artistic mastery of craft, and believe that if any one earned the right to be rich by working hard I am sure that they did; however to not understand that the very art that they did was often anti-authoritarian is mystifying to me. Perhaps fame blinds many to hypocrisy, as their same angry fighting spirit that got them there, wants to cling on to “what is rightfully, not wrongfully, theirs”? 

 

When I listen to Metallica’s music, and then i hear them speak about how they do not understand ‘this new desire to rebel against authority’, i wonder how out of touch they have to be to not have learned more wisdom from their own lyrics…. “Master of Puppets is pulling your strings”. To be fair to Metallica, I first heard the cries for mercy from the lead singer of Kiss in his auto-biography; as though it were so much easier to become rich back then, and luck has nothing to do with opportunities or hard work. Talent speaks for itself, and being successful at your craft means being able to sustain yourself enough to do it. Any wealth, power, and fame that comes with successful talent is just layers of responsibility that they can accept, but must let go of eventually, even if it has to be pried from their cold skeleton hands in the grave by robbers. If an archeologist preserves their remains clinging to their assets, ok fine.

 

Money and popularity makes people into gods, so if their worshipers are jealous there is really not much law abiding citizens can do. The gods can proclaim that jealousy should be punished, but not greed; and have their will carried out in the halls of justice, in favor of divine corporations over individuals. ‘Might is right, and weakness is wrong’; did this problem of human existence eat away at Nietzsche’s mind as his body gave way to illness? Ethics may be for the weak, but Jesus did promise that the meek shall inherit the earth. Promises, promises. I see no evidence that the rich are being punished more than average people. In reality evil seems to win by brutalizing those who cannot control them, even while their corruption pollutes the planet.

 

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Philosophical Anarchism

Posted in Cooperative collaboration, Critical Commentary of Civilization, ecovillages, Legal / Laws, Sustainability, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 29, 2018 by Drogo

Anarchy is absence of supreme government leaders, company authorities, or laws. Anarchism is rejection of central state or group hierarchy for collaborative democracy and independent freedom. Anarchy does not mean ‘let chaos rule’, but can be messy as individuals express themselves voluntarily. Lack of direction from a boss can be scary for many who prefer to be told what to do. Another problem is the political vacuum of anarchy allows despots to use charisma and power to shatter the ideal potential of anarchy and democracy, and create populist structures of obedience to corrupt state systems.

Anarchy is a natural feeling for many people who have an intuitive reaction to any perceived authority over them; which maybe related to our pre-history. Civilization is considered new and brief compared to thousands and thousands of years when humans must have lived more or less like other wild animals with no writing, and no language rules, in primitive anarchy. This anti-authoritarian type of human nature can manifest in complex egalitarian cultures, and thus can create advanced anarchy systems based on cultural capacities. Proudhon considered anarchism to be a political philosophy for “stateless societies based on voluntary associations”. Having no desire for authoritarian companies or governments, anarchists often try to organize and maintain voluntary institutions (like SCOD).

Labor unions (aka trade unions) are groups or collectives of workers, organized to represent their job interests within capitalism. Unions are similar to trade guilds, except they are often employees of companies that need to negotiate with bosses using social pressure and collective protest bargaining, with threat of striking vs lay-offs to enforce contracts. Safety standards, living wages, and benefits are labor themes.

Philosophical anarchism often relates to democracy, communism, socialism, and labor unions because they all are systems to empower workers to control leaders, companies, and governments by the people being responsible for their power. The term ‘worker’ (proletariat) represents the bulk of citizens or their families, and therefore the masses of society. When the workers have to power to vote directly and frequently on their bosses, companies and governments become decentralized and depend on social networks and sub-cultures.

anarchy

[see also Mondragon, Mother Jones, Emma Goldman]

Power Corrupts People

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization, Education / Schools, Ethics & Morals, History, Recommendations & Tributes, Spiritual, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 15, 2018 by Drogo

Baron J.E.E. Dalberg-Acton (aka Lord Acton 1834-1902) was a noble English Catholic historian, politician, and writer. Lord Acton knew several major foreign languages. Acton’s linguistic and religious passion may have influenced Tolkien many years later. A fellow Catholic, Tolkien used the literary legacy that power tends to corrupt even the best men, as his main theme. In Lord of the Rings, the most powerful Ring cannot be used as a tool for good by even the best heroes, because they too would eventually be corrupted, no matter their intentions. The revelation seems to be that power is part of Original Sin as described in the the Bible, in the book of Genesis, in the Garden of Eden. The Old Testament myth that humans fell from the grace of godly paradise because we submitted to the evil temptation of power (the apple advocated by the serpent), seems to have found new expression in the words of these men. Acton collected a large historical library for the “History of Liberty”. Acton was politically Liberal, and travelled greatly. Acton loved reading original historic letters. Acton lived at his country house in Aldenham, Shropshire; and served in the House of Commons. Acton admired the U.S. Government for the Constitution, but oddly sided with the southern Confederacy for defending individual citizen liberties against the tyranny of Union Federal empire (while ignoring slavery). Acton was appointed to the Royal Victorian Order, as a Knight Commander (KCVO).

“History is the arbiter of controversy, the monarch of all she surveys.” “There is not a more perilous or immoral habit of mind than the sanctifying of success.” [about Oliver Cromwell] “The strong man with the dagger is followed by the weak man with the sponge.” “Liberty is not the power of doing what we like, but the right of being able to do what we ought.”

In 1887 Lord Acton wrote his most famous quote:

“…I cannot accept your canon that we are to judge Pope and King unlike other men, with a favorable presumption that they did no wrong. If there is any presumption it is the other way, against the holders of power, increasing as the power increases. Historic responsibility has to make up for the want of legal responsibility. Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men, even when they exercise influence and not authority, still more when you super-add the tendency or the certainty of corruption by authority. There is no worse heresy than that the office sanctifies the holder of it. That is the point at which the negation of Catholicism and the negation of Liberalism meet and keep high festival, and the end learns to justify the means. You would hang a man of no position like Ravaillac; but if what one hears is true, then Elizabeth asked the jailer to murder Mary, and William III of England ordered his Scots minister to extirpate (destroy) a clan. Here are the greatest names coupled with the greatest crimes; you would spare those criminals, for some mysterious reason. I would hang them higher than Haman (biblical Persian minister in the Book of Esther), for reasons of quite obvious justice, still more, still higher for the sake of historical science.”

He is best known for that remark he wrote in a letter to an Anglican bishop; but according to an editor of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica: “Lord Acton has left too little completed original work to rank among the great historians; his very learning seems to have stood in his way; he knew too much and his literary conscience was too acute for him to write easily, and his copiousness of information overloads his literary style. But he was one of the most deeply learned men of his time, and he will certainly be remembered for his influence on others.”

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Mohandas ‘Bapu’ Karamchand Gandhi (1869-1948) was an Indian Hindu non-violent civil disobedience activist. Gandhi was leader of the Indian independence movement against British colonial rule. Gandhi’s self-sacrifice inspired freedom movements for civil rights across the World. Raised in a merchant caste family in India, he later trained in law in London. Gandhi first used non-violent civil disobedience in South Africa, for colonial civil rights. Returning to India in 1915, he organized farmers and workers to protest against high land tax and bigotry. Leading the Indian National Congress in 1921, Gandhi led national campaigns for social causes and self-rule (Swaraj).

Gandhi helped India challenge the British salt tax by marching in 1930. In 1942 Gandhi called for the British to leave India. He was imprisoned for many years, upon many occasions, in South Africa and India. Gandhi lived modestly in a community and wore a traditional hand-spun Indian dhoti and shawl. Gandhi was vegetarian and took long fasts for spiritual and political reasons. Muslim Nationalism (Pakistan) and Gandhi’s Hindu pluralism in India helped to force Britain out of India in 1947.

Displaced Hindus, Muslims, and Sikhs migrated; and religious violence broke out in Punjab and Bengal. Gandhi visited the riots to help and fasted to stop religious violence. Hindu nationalist conservatives criticized and assassinated Gandhi. Gandhi’s birthday is commemorated in India as a national holiday, and worldwide as the International Day of Nonviolence. As with all martyr heroes that lives real lives, Gandhi had many human flaws of the sort that might be emphasized more when historical writers express loss of popular favor their cults.

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John Ronald Reuel Tolkien’s work was certainly influenced by the events of the World Wars, despite his public refusal of metaphor speculation. ‘The Lord of the Rings‘ explores abuse of corrupt power, by considering that the temptation of use of power can eventually corrupt anyone. The One Ring of Power created by Sauron promises great power, but eventually corrupts all who use it. Even good people are corrupted by lust for the Ring because of its power to rival Sauron, and by using its vast powers even the lightest souls darken. The ones best able to carry the Ring are innocent souls with meager ambition, and the best they can do with the Ring is to destroy it.

Tolkien said these words about power: “The proper study of man is anything but man, and the most improper job of any man . . is bossing other men. Not one in a million is fit for it, and least of all those who seek the opportunity.” [Letters #52] Tolkien believed that leaders should be judged by their example, more than common people are judged [James 3:1]. Power and authority allow for the most terrible things. The misuse of power often ruins leaders and followers who allow the abuse to happen. Vigilant active citizens will demand wise balance.

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Power within us and others is clearly our responsibility; not only to control our own will power to keep it within reason, but also to influence the power that we allow others to hold over us and others. If citizens cannot control their own leader’s passion for power from within a government using democracy, then it will be left up to other governments in other countries (see World Wars). The conclusion to the problem of power is perhaps best summarized by Spiderman in Marvel Comics – “With great power, comes great responsibility.”

Racism & Conservative Culture

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization, Politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 26, 2016 by Drogo

My Thoughts on Racists, Racism, and Conservative Culture

This will not take long. ‘Race’ is an artificial term that we use to stereotype or ‘vaguely identify’ physical differences between the same human species, from different ethnic and genetic regions. The fact remains we are so closely related to apes, that these distinctions among our own species are more opinion than fact. Cultural pride is not the same as hateful bigotry; when the two concepts are combined to promote intolerance of differences, humanitarian self-defense must apply social pressure to limit the hostility, or fascist regimes come out of the closet and run governments and kill those that do not obey their domination. History has shown this is true; with all empires and dictators that imposed their belief that their culture is superior to others and deserves to enslave the others.

History has never frozen in time, according to the records. Things are always remixing; cultures, families, animals, plants, inanimate objects comprised of matter, etc. etc… Yes we all have our own biased or bigoted tastes or preferences that are racist because they are based on our own cultural or personal perspectives; that does not mean that being hatefully prejudice against ‘them that are other’ is a good thing in a World where we should be evolving to be more harmonious and cooperative, even with our minor distinct differences and bio-diversity. Death will come to all soon enough, and life has plenty of other challenges that we can spend time on.

Identifying by superficial features is well, superficial. Fear, greed and jealousy are at the heart of Racism, where love should be. “Races” have always been more of a rainbow blend spectrum, rather than ‘black or white’. What we call ‘races‘ (inbred DNA groups in periods of time) and ‘cultures‘ (ethnic or economic power groups) always and constantly change, adopt, adapt, and generally move around in history and countries.
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Hybrid Cultures and Races
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ps – Trump has the same New England style racism as Lovecraft (HORROR author). They are not as violent as the KKK or Nazis, but New England racists want to be the last immigrants; and want to stop cultures from mixing in the melting-pot of liberty. In the South, the KKK mainly focus on attacking blacks with psychological terror and physical violence. The KKK supports Trump, and consider Nazis to be too socialist. The Alt-Right is led by white nerds that want to justify their weak hatred with pseudo-intellectual rhetoric (words). 

SCOD Hybrid Design

Posted in Adaptive Reuse, Crafts, Politics, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 3, 2016 by Drogo

‘All or nothing’ is the same mentality that causes gridlock in Congress, and starts wars. In historic and environmental circles, there are many hypocritical idealists and intolerant purists. Puritanical authoritarian attitude leads to inhumane imbalances in politics, as found in Nazis, and my ancestors ‘the Puritans’ who not only killed witches, but also stray Quakers. As radical as Bernie Sanders seems compared to main-stream Hillary, or far-right Trump; he still would barely scratch the surface of our socio-economic problems or ecological design work that needs to significantly change the paradigm. But Sanders would be a good start to help shift pop-culture a bit further to the left socially, as Obama allowed somewhat, to tolerate pluralism.

The SCOD way of reasoning, is that it is better to preserve larger portions of nature when planning architecture. If over 50% of a farm can be kept for growing food, and wilderness conservation for-ever (as long as can be predicted reasonably and indefinitely), then regardless of the details of any historic, artistic, or ecological architectural combinations; the master plan is a success overall. There are 7 basic SCOD architecture types: Yurt, A-frame, Sod, Cob, Tree, Dome, and Glass; all of which can be mixed or overlap (sod underground homes can be dome-shaped).

Hybrid cultural appropriation and poly-synthetic blending is a natural part of history. Race is an artificial term, to distinguish superficial differences between homo-sapiens. New-Age multiculturalism celebrates social and religious diversity, and encourages exchange and adaptation. Enlightened New-Age spirituality runs parallel with advances in science; such as the importance of bio-diversity, relativity, quantum theory, and mathematical fractals.

Cultural pride is not hatred of others; what ‘cultural pride’ means to me, is I can love Celtic music and mythology, and not hate other cultures. I can even love cultures that are not my own, and adopt what interests me into my own celebrations and studies in life; regardless of snobs that say I am not worthy because it disrespects cultural purity. Obviously I can be sensitive to cultures that have been abused, but I am fine with Africans wearing torcs and crowns like those in the museums of Europe. I would love that. We should share and celebrate each-others historic cultures, while helping to create new World cultural traditional blends. None of it was ever pure, and we will continue mixing and remixing all things.

People should be comfortable in communities, and methods of negotiation are useful to arrive at levels of comfort architecturally. Pillow people need to communicate with Straw people, and find out if some pillows can be made with straw, or if straw or hay can be used without using finished processed materials sometimes. Sharing personal stories, tools, games, and allegories can be helpful as well, in the art of design.

7 dwellings

 fourways temple

Too Busy for Change

Posted in Crafts, Critical Commentary of Civilization, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 14, 2014 by Drogo

When i hear other people saying “sorry i am too busy”, i admit it makes me want to say it more…. i think this is the road block to developing a working community of renaissance doers that function in the market better together. Im not saying we are not actually already busy, with children work school etc…. but i think until we list a scod group as part of that busy-ness with several people committed, large scod projects will remain almost impossible.

It is important to think critically, but it is more important to contribute constructively than only criticize; by ‘contribute constructively’ i do not mean just using nice words to criticize, i mean actually helping by sacrificing more time, tools, or work….. This rule of collective actively, creating and making with others is critical for forcing change, and it starts within our own minds; specifically not just finding problems, but problem solving… which can allow innovation to make a difference.

I understand many people do not want to do certain things, and they do other things to contribute to a better world. However i would like us to continue finding people that not only want to meet, but proactively create meetings and attend them where we conspire to do projects and then do them. Harpers Ferry Outdoor Festival does a great job of this, and not only does it seem to work but i find the meetings a joy to attend.

I remember the feeling that having ‘regular jobs’ creates; it is sort of like the Old Testament God saying, ‘You shall have no other job before me!”

i sometimes commit to way too many projects, and have to quit any that i cant handle. When you have a full time job written in stone, plus the schedule is a full routine every week, then some things have to go if you want to do something else more.

Sometimes the choice is to keep doing the same things, which is fine too… it just makes it impossible if everyone does that to make collective change. if we all say we dont have time to do anything significant outside the box, guess what happens…. nothing significant. We can very easily all say we are too busy for change.

That being said, it is the way of SCOD that some people work more regular jobs in mundane places, in order to fund a better market place transition that is desired. However such full-time normal jobs should not be seen as permanent if people are not content spending the rest of their lives doing it, so long as they are able. As difficult as it may be, sometimes people need help in forcing a change of habit, if indeed they want to change the pattern. If people do not want to change enough mundane patterns to be able to contribute effectively to SCOD, then SCOD is not for them during the times they do not want to do it. SCOD is like an open field, it is there regardless of where you are, and unless it is paved over with a parking lot and condos, it will be there for you to return when you are ready to get serious.

Once people have kids i no longer expect anything from them. In reality i know people commit to what ever they think they want to, in whatever ways they think they can. When slaves are shackled, sometimes desire to be free is not enough. We are all within degrees and shades of freedom and slavery.

Life is tragedy and comedy, going from freedom to slavery, and back and forth to various degrees and shades of bondage and release, falling and flying, weakness or power, living and dying.

Progression of Aggression

Posted in Critical Commentary of Civilization, Organic Development, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 13, 2013 by Drogo

Modern automobiles are a deadly fun convenience for transportation. Yay human civilization, fuck everything else. Roads and vehicles basically say a big FUCK YOU to birds, bees, bugs, plants, animals, and life in general on Planet Earth. Cars and trucks are one of the main killers of life on this planet every day. The truly suicidal thing about the race for bigger and badder killing machines, is that besides murdering billions of deer, possum, skunk, turtles, and other cute critters, we are murdering ourselves too.

TV Shows like ‘Top Gear’ are entertaining, and i certainly have enjoyed watching their stupid antics and testosterone driven points; but there must come a time when we all collectively say “Who the fuck put assholes in charge of running and hosting everything in society?” Even the most ‘hippy’ of the 3 annoying hosts made a statement about alternative cars that made me feel sorry for the state of humanity. What that jerk said may be accurate about hydrogen-fuel-cell electric cars as being the only ‘car of the future’ because they “have all the convenience and horse-power of our current petrol car standards” (or something to that effect) because we have all been pressured to feel that ‘Progress = Aggressive Power’, just as that host was advocating as though the company had given him a bribe.

Progress does not have to mean going faster, moving with more thrust, or being better. Yes often progress should mean being more efficient, breaking records, and all that competitive ‘dog eat dog’ ‘survival of the fittest’ shit. However popular commercial peer pressure is driving the need for road-rage, arrogance, aggression, and pollution as ‘progress’; and to prove that this should not always be our definition of what is ‘good progress’, we need only think about technology that some of us realize we are too stupid to use all the time. For example how many of us say we need to only use nuclear bombs or stronger weapons all the time, since anything less would be ‘going backwards’.

We need to be teaching kids not only that they do not always have to ‘win’ or be ‘winning’ all the time; but sometimes we need to decide to throw the ring into the volcano. To learn how to begin to want to put harmful ideas or technology aside, must start at a young age; otherwise you get tons of middle-aged men having problems figuring this out even during their mid-life crisis with their fucking sports cars. Commercial sports and cars may be fun, but they are both fucking idiotic.

Idiot Puncher

SCOD Alternative Fuel Vehicles Project

Posted in Arts (Design & Performance), Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 21, 2012 by Drogo

Creative Commons Cars – Share your ideas here so no Company can buy it and bury it! Once your idea is public it is closer to immortality.

Have you ever wanted to design an innovative auto? Please contribute your design ideas to this theoretical project for the greater public good, by simply posting them here on this page, or contacting us. Using sustainable industrial design concepts, even if only fictional, will help encourage innovation and other alternatives to traditional fossil fuel combustion engines. Please submit essays, drawings, photos etc. that can all be used by others without copyright. There is no deadline, and all entries will be published here.

Also feel free to post inspirational examples of any alternative fuel ideas! Check out the SCOD Gallery for Alternative Fuel Vehicles. If you contact us, we can add your ideas to that webpage also. https://sites.google.com/site/scodgalleries/alternative-fuel-vehicles

On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/notes/drogo-empedocles/consumer-market-for-alternative-autos/10150858124121910

Note: You do not have to be a professional industrial designer or an automotive expert to be a part of this collaborative project. SCOD is simply seeking a collection of creative designs.

Renewable Energy Radio Shows

Posted in Cooperatives / Communities / Networks / Travels, Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 6, 2011 by Drogo

NPR WYPR-FM Alternative Energy Ideas and Information 88.1

NPR Baltimore Radio host Dan Rodricks hosts a show called “Mid-Day”. This week he has dedicated every day to talking about a plethora of various (electrical) Energy options we have to Power America. He has had many different guests to debate the positive and negative effects of each existing and/or potential energy resource. Coal, Oil, Gas, Nuclear, Wind, Solar, Hydro, Geothermal, etc… Dan has been tackling them all for us.

When I asked him “After a week of hosting shows dedicated to Energy Resources, are you discouraged or encouraged about our future? Or are your feelings too mixed to say?”; Mr. Rodricks told me: “I’m excited about all the innovation and enthusiasm for renewables — it’s real this time.”

It is real. It is time. Thank you Sir Rodricks! Visit his Radio Show online: NPR Midday Website

photo taken by Drogo 2001: Solar Panel fields on the Road in California

Alternative Fuel

Posted in Sustainability with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 20, 2011 by Drogo

Alternative Fuels for Machines, Electricity, Energy and Power

(article coming soon….)

Alternative Fuel Resource Links

Coal Thorium

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