February 1997 Archives

Chapter Beyond

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...and then there was man, the greatest of all creatures on the world Earth.

He was not an especially large creature by any means; of all of mammalia he was maybe a little larger than average, but much smaller than the great blue whale and not near the power of the grizzly bear or the speed of the cheetah. He was on his hind legs, like his close relative the ape, but he didn't use his arms to walk. In fact, his arms seldom touched the ground after the first few years of his life (in early years while strength and coordination were developing he "crawled" on all fours, but later he stood fully erect), decreasing his stability drastically.

But the remarkable characteristic of man was that though he lacked comparable speed, strength, agility, he had the ability to rule the world through his intelligence and precision.

No other being on Earth possessed man's ability to think and discover, and -- this is the unique part -- he alone could pass large quantities of knowledge from one generation to the next. It was a unique type of evolution; with each generation the natural balance of man's world was drastically changed through the accumulation of knowledge.

Apes, cheetahs, whales and bears relearned what their ancestors discovered in entirety, and then they died. They didn't just relearn; they most often rediscovered. And, to an extent, so must man. But with each generation, man learned faster and faster and was free to learn the previously unlearnable because knowledge was able to passed on without rediscovery. Through the aid of physical interpretations of ideas and reproduction of sound waves and light patterns, each generation could learn anything that had been learned by those before them -- after understanding the common symbols -- by simply spending the time to look and listen.

Of course, man did learn experientially like all Earth creatures. Some instinct and some trial-and-error contributed to the accumulation of knowledge. But the ability to think and wonder and physically pass on knowledge gave man something extraordinary. And his world evolved rapidly with the aid of precision.

Precision was man's tool of his intelligence. Without it, his intelligence was nearly worthless. For his precision -- his ability to apply his knowledge with exactness -- enabled man to create man's world. It was as though man was the Creator, or an appendage of Him, reinventing the world. He ruled the world by adding nature to his strength like no other creatures could. He harnessed heat energy. He covered his body and feet with plant life and animal skins, giving him more heat retention and protecting the soles of his tender feet, allowing him to run more quickly and surely.

He formed the solid Earth into vessels that could serve many purposes: travel, food storage, instruments of force and strength. He used dead creatures, along with harnessed heat energy, and put them in vessels that could travel at tremendous speeds. These vessels could break gravitational pulls, much like birds, travel beneath the oceans like the whales, and sometimes would travel even to other worlds.

Man gathered scraps of the Earth to build huge living spaces, much like anthills or bird nests but of sturdier construction. He discovered the atomic makeup of matter and constructed more powerful instruments of strength by physically disrupting that makeup. Man even constructed mechanisms that could gather knowledge faster than man could, and to manipulate matter with more precision than he.

Some have postulated that it was somehow "unnatural" -- as if anything could fall outside the bounds of nature -- for man to change the Earth so much. And because it was "unnatural," it must not be encouraged. But such greatness cannot be tossed out as folly because of an immature philosophical base. That in itself is folly in the purest form.

Before man came along the Earth was the Earth. No creatures changed the Earth. All was part of the Earth and belonged to it. All was nature. When man came along, observers believed that man was somehow not part of the world. That man's rapid evolution was not part of the Earth's natural processes. That man was a product of the Earth, living on the Earth, creating and being created by the Earth, and yet outside of its laws and orders.

Of course, this is ludicrous. Who is to say that a creature may be limited by what is preexistent in order for it to stay within the bounds of the "natural order?" When man uses his own natural abilities, harnesses nature, creates something totally new, and does what his natural instincts tell him, does he cease to be inside of nature? Where is the line, and how does something totally conceived and bred in nature escape nature's grasp?

Sec. 315 and Other Things

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Do you want democracy back? Fix the frigging debates.

There are many problems with the debate system we have. For starters, we have Republicans and Democrats in Congress basically deciding how they should be run, which is inherently unfair to third-parties and "renegade" party members. We need to abolish the congressional debate committee.

But then we need to focus attention on the FCC and Sec. 315, which used to say that third parties who hosted a debate did not have to allow all potential candidates to speak, but news organizations did. But after a lawsuit with Citizens Party candidate Sonia Johnson in 1984, her plan backfired and the court held that even NEWS ORGS could refuse candidates.

So now we are in a situation where not all candidates are allowed to speak out of some sense of expediency that is based on poll data. Take the Atlanta station, for instance, that refused Alan Keyes to debate during the Georgia primary based on NEW HAMPSHIRE results. Regardless of your political affiliation, this should send chills up your spine. That in this case, we allow primary data from one state to dictate who is allowed to speak in another state. That in the presidential election, we allowed POLL DATA to dictate whether or not Ross Perot should be allowed to debate.

I like to quote Bob Dole, who said last summer that "the only poll that matters is election day" ... unless, of course, we are talking about Ross Perot.

We have the FCC for a reason, that reason being that airwaves are a public commodity. While I am tempted to use this as a reason for forcing the FCC to allow all candidates to speak, I won't, because airwaves might not matter so much in the not-too-distant future.

Instead, I will plead my case on the basis of the people's right to information. The two most important notions to the preservation of this nation are liberty and democracy. In this case, we are talking about democracy. Democracy depends -- totally relies -- on the free flow of information. Without free information, democracy is impossible.

But what has happened is that the government has given control over this information to the mass media, and in truth has given control of democracy itself to the media. That is unconstitutional and needs to be fixed immediately.

The federal government has a specific, vested interest in how the information in elections is presented, and has the right to regulate it if that regulation is specifically designed, and results in, freer information for the people. It has the right. It should use it.

What should be the requirements, then? If you are on enough ballots to win the election, you should be allowed to speak in all debates. Period. That simple. Democracy, being totally reliant on free information, mandates no less.

Now, obviously, this can only be specifically applied to the presidential election. But the federal government could set an example for the states to follow in primaries, senatorial, congressional and all local elections.

It is not too early to get together on this. Something needs to be done now, before it is, once again, too late.


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  • once broke up a fight between strangers in a crowded shopping mall
  • have only had sex with one person, my wife
  • will never have sex with anyone else, and I will never divorce
  • still have faith not only in the Macintosh platform, but in the Newton and Apple Computers in general
  • believe that ...
    • the Declaration of Independence not only still has meaning today, but that it is the source of our national value system and it is legally binding
    • the Bible is infallible in its originally written form
    • the government has the right to make and enforce laws regarding Internet content
    • it is impossible to enforce most laws on Internet content
    • speling, grammer, sintax subject are to change, culture and interpretation dependant on
    • language rules exist and must be followed in formal communication
    • rules are not absolute
    • faith is absolute
    • income tax is an evil throwback to feudalism
    • the federal government is in direct violation of the 10th Amendment to the Constitution in most of its social programs, and should be held accountable
    • human life beings at conception
    • human life never ends
    • people in general are stupid, ignorant, and lousy
    • people in general are capable of awesome greatness
    • athletes should not get paid more money in exchange for doubled ticket prices
    • sports franchises are a public resource
    • I've said just about enough
<pudge/*> (pronounced "PudgeGlob") is thousands of posts over many years by Pudge.

"It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become a prey to the active. The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt."

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