All I know is that I don't know.
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Sunday, September 29, 2002
I'm fairly certain that we don't live in The Matrix. Or, even if we do, I don't hold the key to salvation for humanity from the AI overlords. My key for knowing this? I don't own NEARLY enough black leather/lycra. The number of trenchcoats I own is zero. I also couldn't wear leather pants. Nor do I do websearches for cool things like "Morpheous" or "The Matrix". I'm not gonna divulge what I look for. That's between me and the sea. Or, at least, between me and my browser cache. However, I do support research into AI, and psionics, and cloning, and all that good stuff. 'Specially the EVIL kind of research. If we don't support this research,

  • Tokyo will never be destroyed by the Akira force or Godzilla.

  • We will never get cool Gundam/Robotech/Starship Troopers power armor.

  • We can kiss jet packs and flying cars goodbye forever.

  • The Butlerian Jihad will never occur, which means that humanity will never become dependant on melange, which means that I will never be born as Muad'Dib, and will never lead my Fremen to independance, which means that my son Leto will never become some sort of weird symbiotic Shai Hulud thing, and Duncan Idaho will never be cloned, like, a million times, which means that we'll never go beyond the known universe.

  • Without melange, there will be no motivation to do research into amal, which means that the Honored Matres will never spin off of the Bene Gesserit, which means that sex can never be used as a kick-ass weapon.

  • We'll never get nano.

  • The Sprawl will never be real, which means that all kinds of kick-ass stuff will never happen.

Can you tell I've been in a sci-fi mood?

I wonder if it would be possible to make some sort of Grand Unification Metaverse which would merge all sci-fi into a cohesive History of the Future. It'd be a bitch to merge Foundation with Dune, though. Of course, you could always go with a cop-out and play the Multiverse card. But, how would you rectify that with the notion of one Universe interacting with another, like in the photon slit-test? C'mon, Charlie! HOW DO YOU RECTIFY THAT? (For those of you who aren't tremendous geeks, the slit test has been done. It goes something like this: Take a beam of light -- even a laser -- and shoot it through 2 slits. You'll get a standard wave amplification/cancellation pattern. No big surprises there. But, you get the same thing EVEN IF YOU FIRE ONE PHOTON AT A TIME AT THE PAIR OF SLITS! The photon can only go through one of the slits -- not both. Yet you still get the same wave pattern, which seems to indicate that, perhaps, a photon from a neighboring Universe is interacting with the photon in our Universe. Quantum Physics can break your brain faster than anything.)

Strangely enough, it's easier for me to wrap my head around concepts like Multiverses and Heisenberg Uncertainty Principles and Schrodinger's Cat than it is to accept Economics as being a science. Perhaps it's because I demand that macroecon and microecon be completely compatible. Completely. Until Economists can predict things like 'rumors' and 'bad moods' and 'rough weekends' and accurately state how they will affect things like 'markets', I don't believe them. Here's my understanding of economics:

1. I have money.
2. I spend money.
3. I get paid again.
4. goto 1.

Don't even get me started on 'farm markets'. That's like the little training version of a real market. There are limits on how high or low a price can go in a day. There are upper and lower limits on the prices of grain. What the fuck kind of market is that? You can't get paid more than $5.40 for a bushel of soybeans? Ever? Even if you're the only person in the world with the precious, precious beans? And, even if the bottom drops out of the markets, you still get paid by the government? What the fuck ever. Dump the shit on a real market.

"But, Grant "RawkStah" Bennett, what about Saving The Family Farm?" Fuck the family farm. My dad is a small businessman. Does he depend on government subsidies when the market for computer techs is down? I work for one of the few independent radio stations left. Does the General Manager depend on welfare if the advertising market is bad? Is the USDA going to bail out my dad or my boss? "But, farming is important!" Yup. It is. But, we're not going to NOT have food. Not anytime soon. If corporate farms take over, so be it. What's the big deal about family farms? "But, what about corporate radio?" Corporate radio sucks. That's why I don't listen to it. Plus, if Arbitron goes forth with their new PPM devices, rather than relying on diaries, there are going to be MASSIVE changes in the way radio works. "But, what about corporate computer techs?" HA! You thought that you got me there, didn't you? Well, lemme tell you -- they outsource. They farm out tech work to indie techs. "HA! You said "farm"!" STFU, man. STFU. I only tolerate hypocrasy in myself, not in the real world. That's why I'm not in The Hague. It's also why I'm not a preacher, or counselor, or lawyer, or in any sort of position of power or influence.

I see grey areas everywhere, but not on the important issues. On the important issues, there can be no grey areas. If they're that important, things are either right or wrong. For example:

If killing with intent is wrong in one instance (murder), it is wrong in every instance (the death penalty). I'll buy self-defense as a reason to kill someone, but not punishment.

Life may begin at conception, but humanity doesn't begin until brain activity. No brain activity, no humanity. A blastocyst is not human. Nor is a person who is only "alive" because they have a machine breathing for them, and pumping their blood, and functioning as their liver and kidneys. If a person is brain dead, that person is dead. Harvest their organs and give them to someone who needs them.

In in virto fertilization, there are always more eggs fertilized than are needed. The unused pre-embryos are then discarded. Why not use them for stem cells? What higher purpose could there be than to provide the cure for cancer or Parkinson's or Alzheimer's? These cells won't ever become humans -- why not use them to benefit humans? I'm not talking about embryo farms -- I'm talking about using something that exists already, not creating more potential people for the sake of research.

That's why I'm not Mayor of Earth.

Comments by: YACCS