Atlas Sneezed

Dear Blog,

Omg. I missed you so much today. Were you a good boy? Were you? Who’s my little bloggy-woggy? Did you miss me? Yes. You did, didn’t you. Exeunt private moment.

In case you don’t know there are some cool, funny, obscure programming languages out there. There’s this one, which is actually surprisingly fun and useful, good practice for the true hacker elite (who use this search engine). Other funny ones are Shakespeare, Chef and LOLCODE. These are just Wikipedia links but I bet you’re too lazy to google them yourself. Some of you might also be aware that the bible has been translated into lolspeak. Just imagine if all this creative work and effort was put into something useful!

So Philosophy Bites is a pretty good podcast. But sometimes frustrating. But to some degree, in a good way. Always food for thought and for throwing at eachother in a food-fight. So, punishment (a Victor Tadros episode). I was always skeptical about the purpose of punishment. Is it to protect society and/or rehabilitate? The death penalty is murder by the state! It doesn’t seem very positive or productive. Anyway, an interesting scenario was brought up. A rapist is on the loose. You can’t catch them. But if you imprison an innocent person that fits the profile, you might prevent a bunch of other rapes by deterring criminals. Can the good outweigh the bad? Intuitively it still seems wrong. But what if we assume you actually successfully keep things under wraps and discourage many rapes?

I say still wrong. It’s bad that a detective should fail anyway. Like thermodynamics and pretty much all of science, you have to look a closed system. Just because there are 5 less rapes this summer doesn’t mean you’ve done anything about rape in general. You might delay criminals. You don’t know the repercussions of your actions. The butterfly effect, man. A good new famous magician might lift morale enough that women are hornier and men are more satisfied and happy and then there are less rapes (for instance). More philosophically, I believe there’s no perfect lie. Life finds a way. It’s impossible to lie to yourself. Deep down, you know. Knowledge cannot be destroyed. Ironically, it’s sometimes the things we analyse and repeat the least that are the strongest, purest memories. Untainted.

Mark Twain said something about you shouldn’t lie because then you don’t have to remember what you said. Funny. The truth isn’t so much a thing that is everywhere, it’s the absence of deception. Trust is what you lose when people lie. Until then, you were blissfully ignorant of such unnecessary pain. I think we have the potential to be like gods. But we try to take too much too quickly. Cover our tracks. It doesn’t work. Our natural state is happiness. No stress. We seem to get mixed up. Think it’s something that can be bought. That only lasts so long. That follows a formula. We forget the spontaneous wonder of life. Of the miracle of every moment. We flush every joyous second down the toilet. Nobody knows anything. It’s all just words and ideas. We’re all worlds apart. Don’t be tempted into believing that everything’s fine. Don’t lie, it’ll make it worse.

Ooh, new thought! So comedians talk about their craft and about “truth”. They aren’t revealing the truth. Although in a way they are. Really, they’re noticing the lies everyone is telling and then unshackling us from them. We set up the premise with our lies, our subtle and at the same time not-at-all-subtle body language and manipulation. This grand society we mutually create. They just say what they see. They tear it down. They free us and heal us. Stereotypically, comedians are messed-up, manic depressive, self-absorbed, etc. They’ve been exposed (probably of their own choosing) to the raw truth of life. Scarred by it perhaps, by no means necessarily a bad or irreversible thing. Most people hide away from it and blame others for the problems of modern life. We loosen up when we have nothing to lose. Now why is that? What are we “protecting” when we judge strangers?

Challenge of the week (or year or whenever, I have this fanciful notion that one day this will be some classic masterpiece blog that everybody will be catching up on reading so yeah, a week from when you first read this, future person):

Spot road work being done in a road work zone. Toughness level = 79/100. Occasionally you’ll spot a bulldozer moving dirt or a few guys standing around. But usually, you just hear crickets. Maybe there should be points! A scoring system! 10 points for each guy you see, 30 if it’s a lady, a bonus 100 if they’re working, 50 for each bulldozer, 40 for someone holding a SLOW/STOP sign, etc. Feel free to add!


About karnok

A legendary ninja.
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