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Steve_B Veteran


Far southwest corner of Indiana, USA
Last Active
Far southwest corner of Indiana, USA
  • Re: Belief.

    But why would you have to deduce it with logic, elegant though that may be, when you can observe it directly?

  • Re: Belief.

    @JaySon said:
    it's impossible to trace a direct correlation between one moral action and one moral consequence.

    This might be true, but is it important? Fluoride in the municipal water reliably lowers the incidence of dental cavities, but not to zero. So you can't look at a single cavity in a single child and discern causality. That doesn't mean there isn't causality. It means the tree in your face is obscuring your view of the forest. The effect isn't at the tree level, it's at the forest level.

  • Re: Belief.

    @JaySon said:
    Can you take a moral action then clearly identify a corresponding moral effect to that action? Not that I'm aware of. I don't see how karma can be proven true.

    I don't think it can be proven to you, but you can prove it to yourself. First you have to select the experimental methodology and subjects. Let's say we're going to do DOE and not Evop, and we're going to pick wide axials for the experiment. I submit that there are no viable external objectively observable subjects. You're limited to internal, but that's for the better anyway, as you have more control and a better view of the dependent variable. Now live, act, think, speak morally for, say, a year. Make it a component of your being. BE morality. Then, switch the independent variable. Be as intensely, savagely, consistently and relentlessly immoral as you can be, for a year. Observe internal effects.

  • Re: Creepy or convenient

    Karasti, thank you for posting that fascinating article.

    Reading it, I'm reminded that Country music publishers allegedly use data in a similar way. Songs with certain elements and phrases make more money. It also reminds me of Unilever Liverpool and the evolutionary biologist who became the world's best fluid dynamics designer with no background in that field. But I don't want to tell that story right now. What I do want to mention is this little tidbit from the article:

    What's Next?

    But to what extent did psychometric methods influence the outcome of the election? When asked, Cambridge Analytica was unwilling to provide any proof of the effectiveness of its campaign.

    Here's what I can now see is next. The use of this subliminal manipulation was not done for the election as an event, and it would be a mistake for us to continue to think of the election as a discrete event. The process was not temporally finite -- it is still happening. Bannon is in the White House. In the White house. Data is still being employed for manipulation of minds, apparently-berserk tweets are still being created and launched, still searching out dispersed collections of malleable minds, now with the full participation and political/financial backing of the country's chief executive and the resources at his command. And it's not just tweets of course. Odd, inscrutable, "berserk" actions. Why would we think they are not data driven and carefully choreographed?

    It wasn't just the election. It is also now the government -- this is how they are governing. They have, very literally, taken over the White House.

  • Re: I Vow To Stop Watching And Reading Politics

    @dhammachick said:
    OK let's not get snarky folks.

    No snark added.
    The entire post, except the single word 'citizen,' is direct quotes! And they're PERFECT!

    But you're right. I don't descend to the low road very often, even for such an obvious target (and all in fun of course), but perhaps I could reduce the frequency even more . . . What do comedians do when they run out of raw material? (And is there any danger of that?)

    OK, back to the positivity: