Saturday, July 14, 2012

State law and parenting – Another aura of moral legitimacy


According to the LA Times, the law says, "If a parent caused a child's death through abuse or neglect, then the other children in that parent's care can be made court dependents, and child welfare workers can remove them from their home." In other words, if you screw up once in a big enough way, then the state will come along and isolate you from those who care most about you. The LA Times says it sounds logical, at first: "… if government ever is justified in taking children from their parents, that's when it should be done."  Read More...

Monday, July 9, 2012

Developing Human versus Computer Languages


While human language is used to entertain, inform, and manipulate, computer languages are used only to control the behavior of machines. With human language, both sender and receiver are humans, but computer languages are received only by machines. No one has any control over how human language is able to produce these effects, but for computer languages, there is always a controlling authority that specifies exactly how the language controls the machine.  Read More

Thursday, July 5, 2012

My Interview with Ernest Dempsey


Ernest Dempsey — Dave Scotese, founder of the online literary community Litmocracy, is a brain at work – whether online or offline.  Dave is a software consultant whose interest borders on the language of advanced gadgets, philosophical matters, and the human situation in the broader context. Above all, Dave is a critic gifted with the faculty of looking beyond the obvious. No wonder then that a question I recently happened to ask him led us into talking about power and subordination. Dave pointed to Tolkien's popular fantasy novel The Lord of the Rings in which the bearer of the ring is influenced by its immense power, compelling him to venture into dangerous situations. What parallels we find in our lives with the motifs of slavery, possession, and power are the central element of the following discussion with Dave Scotese. Read More...

Taxpayers' say in Space Research

 
With each annual budget announcement for NASA's research and exploration, a question asked numerous times already starts crossing one's observation: what exactly is the real worth of all this space exploration to the life of an average American? And this question is tied to the pocket of an average American citizen since his/her tax goes into funding the projects and enterprises that venture into the vastness of space. NASA has a pretty colossal budget—$17.7 billion, according to this document. For what is it mainly used? Like all entities governed by committees, Read More...

Introduction to Voluntaryism


Voluntaryism is a purposeful misspelling of volunteerism or voluntarism (take your pick) because it is not founded on providing services for free. Instead, it's founded on the non-aggression principle. More precisely, it's founded on the idea of never threatening to violate another person's rights. That makes it sound very common, and I believe it is, but threats of right-violation can be hidden. For example a tax is a state demand for property, and if it weren't backed by the threat of violation of property (seizure) or movement (incarceration), then it wouldn't be a tax. Sadly, most people accept taxation while also remaining largely voluntaryist otherwise. I believe this duplicity has been a core reason for human suffering for many centuries.  Read More...