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Jordan Peacock
Lives in Lakeville, MN
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Jordan Peacock

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When I was growing up, “retail employee” and “college teacher” were both career options. Now they might still be, but only if you combine them.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/mattdebenham/bagging-groceries-grading-papers
I can't make a living as an adjunct professor, so I got a job at a grocery store in my town. A tale of trying to be middle class in today's America.
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Jordan Peacock

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Aaron Helton originally shared:
 
Youngest Earth Creationism: A Primer

Yesterday, as something of a joke, I came up with the term "youngest earth creationist." I woke up this morning inclined to formalize it into something more concrete, and because   #insert <action contrary to proverb about dead horses, sleeping dogs, or a mixture of metaphors>,  I have developed the following. Suggestions for improvement are welcome.

You might be familiar with Young Earth Creationism (YEC). Its members claim to base their calculations of the earth's age on a strictly literal interpretation of the Bible. I won't spend too much time questioning what they mean when they say "Bible", since there is more than one version considered canonical by any number of groups; suffice it to say they've picked one such version and assumed its translations into their preferred English vernacular can be taken at literal face value. Anyway, the age they often arrive at is somewhere between 6,000 and 10,000 years, which at either end places the birth of our planet squarely within the timeframes of already existing and thriving human civilizations (or apparently so).

There is not a group, as far as I can tell, who call themselves Younger Earth Creationists. If there were, I imagine they would suggest that, in their interpretation, the earth is younger than the young earth creationists believe, and no matter how young a young-earther might consider the earth, a younger-earther is always going to aim for younger than that. But there is no such group, because that's absurd.

There is, as of today, a group (with me as its sole member) that calls itself the Youngest Earth Creationists (YestEC or, if you want to pronounce it, yest-eck). It posits that the earth is arbitrarily young, the absolute youngest it could possibly be, and not older than that. There are three main strains of thought in the YestEC branch.

Those of the group who are most aligned with traditional Young Earth Creationism (there are, as yet, none) suggest that the earth was created in our subjective past, at a point between moments ago and 6-10,000 years ago, but we cannot be certain precisely when.

The second strain, to which I belong, suggests that the earth was created at most mere moments ago, and that all sensation of memory has been simulated to reassure us.

The third strain, which is almost heretical, is that the earth has yet to be created, and we are the simulation that will be inserted into it to reassure those who will be created within it.

In all cases, it is accepted that the earth is younger than it has been made to appear. The evidence we have apparently amassed detailing an age orders of magnitude greater than our Great Book(s) have taught us, we believe, has been fabricated by Satan, the deceiver, for the sole purpose of deceiving us. This is why the third strain of YestEC is a potential heresy. If we are the simulation elements that will populate the eventual youngest earth, then we have not, in fact, been fabricated by the deceiver. And if we are certain we have not been fabricated by the deceiver, how can we be similarly certain that what we think we know of the past was fabricated by the deceiver? The problem, as you can see, is that the third strain gives way fairly quickly to uncomfortable considerations, which we will hastily discard because we hate discomfort. Apparently.

And so, we members of the Youngest Earth Creationists tend to greet each other in the following manner: "Welcome to the newly created world, fellow traveler."
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I hereby proclaim the Procrastinated Earth Creationists.

The Earth hasn't yet been created. But we'll get around to it. Later.

Jordan Peacock

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Trivial social engineering and we lap it up like trendy pablum.

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It's a massive shock that turns Canadian politics on its head. CBC has projected that the NDP has won a majority government in Alberta.
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Jordan Peacock

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American friends, if you're curious to see how you'd end voting in Canada's Parliamentary system, give this a try.

I like that the quiz allows you to take more questions in any given category, as well as rate your answer as being more or less important overall.

This was pretty close, for me: I lean NDP/Green, usually.

http://canada.isidewith.com/political-quiz?from=R6ARUncfk
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+carey g. butler Ah, thanks for "standard." Now you need to study what a slave is. The United States of America is the first country in the history of history to outlaw slavery.

Surprise!


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Heretic of the Christian doctrines of Aristotle
1 year ago, I posted "Found this gem in the editor's introduction to Giordano Bruno's The Expulsion of the Triumphant Beast: 'The intellectual climate at Oxford was such that Bachelors and Masters of Art were fined five shillings for each disagreement with the premises of Aristotle's Organon; and those whose views were irreconcilable with the opinions of the Stagirite were peremptorily expelled. Bruno tells us in De la causa that every student was obligated by oath to heed the following admonishment, which appeared in the university statues: "nullus ad philosophiae et theologiae magisterium et doctoratum promoveatur, nisi epotaverit e fonte Aritotelis." ("let no one be advanced to the degrees of Master and Doctor of Philosophy and Theology, unless he has drunk from the fountain of Aristotle.")' After Bruno fled Naples to evade church discipline, he lived all over Europe, getting himself kicked out of Paris and Geneva, and stirring up trouble in London, Frankfurt, Prague, Helmstedt, etc. Some of these were Catholic-controlled, others Protestant or Calvinist. But the #1 reason for his being expelled or prevented from teaching was his refusal to acknowledge the validity of Aristotelian metaphysics: on this the Calvinists and Catholics were in agreement. I find it fascinating how such a significant aspect of Church history (the near-complete intellectual takeover by the Neo-Platonists and Peripatetics schools after their rediscovery) is almost completely unknown by believers today, and is even disavowed."
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+Alex Law It's been overgeneralized. That is a factor though. All perspectives are important.
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Review of the board-game version of the war in Afghanistan, A Distant Plain:

At the end of the game, I think two things most stood out. One was the difficulty of maintaining a consistent strategy in a dynamic, multi-actor environment. No matter how much one tried to plan several turns out, things would simply happen that altered your calculations. When they did, one was forced with an often difficult decision whether it would be better to stay the course (despite changed circumstances), or revise one’s approach (thereby having possibly wasted a turn or two of preparation). This is a useful antidote to those who see political-military strategy, whether in wargames or real wars, as something akin to a cake recipe. It is far more uncertain than that, at times as much Kenny Rogers as Clausewitz.

The second real take-away from the game was the path-dependency noted earlier, and the ways in which capabilities influenced strategy and tactics. Both of the insurgent players clearly feared the Coalition’s growing ability to use drones and airstrikes, a capability into which we had invested considerable effort through acquiring the relevant event cards. However, in retrospect, I am painfully aware of the ways in which our low-risk counter-insurgency-by-remote-control tactics came at the expense of other actions. We had been slow to push a Coalition presence out into the countryside. We had been slow to train the Afghan military. We had depended too much, perhaps, on UAVs in the sky rather than boots on the ground. We had done too much on behalf of our allies, instead of building their capacity to do more themselves. Cognitively, we had somewhat fallen prey to the “law of the tool”: “if you have a hammer, every problem looks like a nail”— or, in this remotely-piloted case, “if you have a Reaper, every problem looks like a target”. True, we had done well in the game—had we been able to pull our troops out quickly, we might have even won. But could we have done even better if we had been less seduced by new gadgets?

I suppose answering that question will have to await our next game of A Distant Plain.

https://paxsims.wordpress.com/2013/10/31/review-a-distant-plain/
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Alec MacGillis:

The Idyll is so attainable for nonaristocracy because it is located within a deeply troubled city. It requires a relatively healthy local economy for its sustenance. But if Baltimore’s economy were stronger, if its poorer neighborhoods were not so racked by violence and despair, and if the notoriety of that violence and despair did not so shadow the city’s national reputation, the Baltimore Idyll would not be so affordable for the shabbily genteel—it’s as simple as that.

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2015/05/my_baltimore_neighborhood_is_a_wonderful_place_to_live_it_is_made_possible.html
The three fire trucks heaved to a stop right outside our house in Baltimore on Tuesday night, all red and white flashing lights, as firefighters jumped out to unspool their hoses. Our younger son leaped out of bed and screamed: “There’s something wrong!” But there was nothing wrong. It was...
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Just to make clear the scope of the transition.
See the change in Alberta's electoral landscape as the orange wave swept through Alberta.
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There is a Green Party, but it's nonexistent with respective to Alberta provincial politics. You see more of it in B.C., Ontario and the Yukon.

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In a new study, published in the scientific journal Current Biology, the scientists created an out-of-body illusion in fifteen healthy participants placed inside a brain scanner. In the experiment, the participants wore head-mounted displays and viewed themselves and the brain scanner from another part of the room. From the new visual perspective, the participant observes the body of a stranger in the foreground while their physical body is visible in the background, protruding from the bore of the brain scanner. To elicit the illusion, the scientist touches the participant's body with an object in synchrony with identical touches being delivered to the stranger's body, in full view of the participant.

"In a matter of seconds, the brain merges the sensation of touch and visual input from the new perspective, resulting in the illusion of owning the stranger's body and being located in that body's position in the room, outside the participant's physical body," says Arvid Guterstam, lead author of the present study.

In the most important part of the study, the scientists used the out-of-body illusion to perceptually 'teleport' the participants between different places in the scanner room. They then employed pattern recognition techniques to analyze the brain activity and show that the perceived self-location can be decoded from activity patterns in specific areas in the temporal and parietal lobes. Furthermore, the scientists could demonstrate a systematic relationship between the information content in these patterns and the participants' perceived vividness of the illusion of being located in a specific out-of-body position.

http://www.neuroscientistnews.com/research-news/brain-scan-reveals-out-body-illusion
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Slavoj Žižek:

"The problem with fundamentalists is not that we consider them inferior to us, but, rather, that they themselves secretly consider themselves inferior. This is why our condescending politically correct assurances that we feel no superiority towards them only makes them more furious and feeds their resentment. The problem is not cultural difference (their effort to preserve their identity), but the opposite fact that the fundamentalists are already like us, that, secretly, they have already internalized our standards and measure themselves by them. Paradoxically, what the fundamentalists really lack is precisely a dose of that true ‘racist’ conviction of their own superiority."
How fragile the belief of an Islamist must be if he feels threatened by a stupid caricature in a weekly satirical newspaper, says the Slovenian philosopher.
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Indeed, a common media sketch of an Islamist attacker in the West is that of an alientated misfit who has turned to radical Islam after a directionless life of personal and/or financial failure. Typically a young man, insecure in his beliefs and trying on a series of guises before embracing radical Islam. In other words, a loser with low stakes in society. This is in contrast to the profile of organized Islamists in their native lands, where there is power and status to be gained through revolution.

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Everything is vague to a degree you do not realize till you have tried to make it precise.

 - Bertrand Russel
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Principia Mathematica was one of them that tested him. It was said that he was never the same afterward.
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Currently
Lakeville, MN
Previously
Norman Wells, Northwest Territories, Canada - Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Edmonton, Alberta, Canada - Mahboula, Kuwait - Adan, Kuwait - Hadiya, Kuwait - Sydney, New South Wales, Australia - Burnsville, Minnesota, U.S.A. - Lakeville, Minnesota, U.S.A.
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Introduction
I like the stars. It's the illusion of permanence, I think. I mean, they're always flaring up and caving in and going out. But from here, I can pretend... I can pretend that things last. I can pretend that lives last longer than moments. Gods come, and gods go. Mortals flicker and flash and fade. Worlds don't last; and stars and galaxies are transient, fleeting things that twinkle like fireflies and vanish into cold and dust. But I can pretend.

                               Neil Gaiman "The Sandman"

I'm a metaphysical realist, posthumanist, autodidact, infovore.

I'm intellectually promiscuous, and love provocative engagements in good faith. I post regularly on topics that interest me, which include but are not limited to: political philosophy, world history, world news, philosophy of technology, political activism, cutting edge computer science, resilient community building and futurist scenario-building.

I am married, and we have two small children.

I blog regularly at hewhocutsdown.net.

Below are a few other quotes that capture well how I see the world:

"You are not an atheist if you deny what theists affirm. You are an atheist if you have no use for the concepts and doctrines of theism."

                         John Gray

"You cannot banish unreason simply by believing correct things."

                         Andreas Schou

When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes.

                               Erasmus

Democracy is...the action that constantly wrests the monopoly of public life from oligarchic governments, and the omnipotence over lives from the power of wealth. It is the power that, today more than ever, has to struggle against the confusion of these powers, rolled into one and the same law of domination.

                               Jacques Rancière, Hatred Of Democracy
                                        translated by Steve Corcoran

"Submitting oneself to labor discipline—supervision, control, even the self-control of the ambitious self-employed—does not make one a better person. In most really important ways, it probably makes one worse. To undergo it is a misfortune that at best is sometimes necessary. Yet it’s only when we reject the idea that such labor is virtuous in itself that we can start to ask what is virtuous about labor. To which the answer is obvious. Labor is virtuous if it helps others."

                               David Graeber

Changing our way of thinking about the world is a necessary first step, but it is by no means sufficient: we will need to destratify reality itself, and we must do so without the guarantee of a golden age ahead, knowing full well the dangers and possible restratifications we may face.

                               Manuel de Landa
                               "A Thousand Years Of Nonlinear History"

Anarchism, at least as I understand it, leaves posterity free to develop its own particular systems, in harmony with its needs. Our most vivid imagination cannot forsee the potentialities of a race set free from external restraints. How, then can anyone assume to map out a line of conduct for those to come? We, who pay dearly for every breath of fresh air, must guard against the tendency to fetter the future. If we succeed in clearing the soil from the rubbish of the past and the present, we will leave to posterity the greatest and safest heritage of all ages.

                               Emma Goldman

"The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far."

                               H.P. Lovecraft

"Let's plan for a future where we're all as stupid as we are today."

                         Andreas Schou

"Modern politics is a chapter in the history of religion."

                         
John Gray

"The debate between believers and atheists is confused. The real issue is not whether one should side with believers that assert the reality of the divine and supernatural, and the secular who assert only the reality of the material world or the naturalistic; rather, the debate is between logics of transcendence/sovereignty/patriarchy/state versus logics of immanence/anarchy. The issue of supernatural causation is a historically important issue given our current historical moment, but a sidebar to a much more fundamental issue. For my part, I am an a-theist, not an atheist."

                         Levi Bryant

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Occupation
Freelance Researcher, Consultant, Software Contractor
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Jordan Peacock's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
Why Our Children Don't Think There Are Moral Facts - NYTimes.com
opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com

George Washington, depicted here taking the oath of office in 1789, was the first president of the United States. Fact, opinion or both?Cred

CGS : DIY Bio-Engineering: Disrupting Democracy
www.biopoliticaltimes.org

The Do-It-Yourself synthetic biology movement (or, DIY synbio) is not advocating citizen science, let alone democratizing science. It's not

Austin legislator calls Austin largest U.S. city without congressional d...
www.politifact.com

During Texas House action, two Travis County Democrats discussed whether Austin is weird in a politically unique way. From the House floor’s

Amy Schumer Did an Episode-Long 12 Angry Men Parody About the Horrible W...
www.vulture.com

Starring John Hawkes, Paul Giamatti, Vincent Kartheiser, and Jeff Goldblum.

Braid: Notley’s NDP rises from the wreckage of epic PC disasters | Calga...
calgaryherald.com

The NDP dreamed it. Legions of Albertans wanted it. But who could imagine it actually happening, writes the Herald’s Don Braid. Rachel Notle

Alberta election results: A map of then and now
www.cbc.ca

See the change in Alberta's electoral landscape as the orange wave swept through Alberta.

An NDP victory changes everything Canadians think about Alberta
www.theglobeandmail.com

Few provincial elections can transfix a country. This one did

Wednesday Words - Prairie Spring
alteredfaces.blogspot.com

Evening and the flat land, Rich and sombre and always silent; The miles of fresh-plowed soil, Heavy and black, full of strength and harshnes

Corporate drone Joss Whedon fought the pure artistic impulses of Marvel ...
www.avclub.com

Without getting into any spoilers (in case you’re one of the three remaining Americans who has yet to see Avengers: Age Of Ultron), a scene

Better People and Better Societies Through Philosophy
romneymanassa.wordpress.com

But a smattering of undergrad philosophy classes taught me something applicable to any and every job: clarity of thought. Name me one aspect

‘The Game Done Changed’: Reconsidering ‘The Wire’ Amidst the Baltimore U...
www.thenation.com

I was a Wire fanatic because I thought it told tough truths about Baltimore City. After the last two weeks, I'm starting to see all that it

A Home for All the Lonely Apple Watch Heartbeats
www.wired.com

Your phone's ability to pin-point your exact location gives us plenty to be excited about. But this world of always-on GPS raises new questi

A Trick For Higher SAT scores? Unfortunately no.
www.terryburnham.com

Wouldn’t it be cool if there was a simple trick to score better on college entrance exams like the SAT and other tests? There is a reputable

Did Tesla Just Kill Nuclear Power?
www.forbes.com

It would be almost three hours until Tesla's big announcement, but inside a Northwestern University classroom near Chicago Thursday night, t

xkcd: Degree-Off
xkcd.com

Warning: this comic occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for