Holy Shit, I Still Have a Website.

My lord, I’ve been spending too much time on Facebook.

I’ve neglected my role here, as RPN. My deepest apologies.

To catch you up to the story quickly (this would be Chapter 12 for those reading at home), our hero in the story has taken to walking the Earth in order to save it.

Which sounds all grandiose and shit, but is actually much more mundane and all work-like in this our Real World.

There are so many problems to fix you see, and only so much time in which to do so. What to do first? Where should I focus my talents *now*.

And so I picked one, as so many do in these days, off the List of Craig. A truly wondrous resource, which once again reaffirms the fact that we are wondering into a new Age of human civilization (the Information One).

So in order to continue the trend of outputting so much information at once onto the Interwebs at once, and blasting it off into the ether of other’s minds, I shall continue my story about my current job.

I’m walking the world to save the world (mainly because I like vague self-referential loops, as illustrated in Chapter something or other).

Now I’m doing so literally. With an organization that focused on a problem near and dear to my heart, electronics.

I’ll let the New York Times update you on the solution that many states have adopted.

This month, Edward Reilly, 35, finally let go of the television he had owned since his college days.

Although the Mitsubishi set was technologically outdated, it had sat for years in Mr. Reilly’s home in Portland, Me., because he did not know what else to do with it, given the environmental hazards involved in discarding it.

But the day after the nationwide conversion to digital television signals took effect on June 12, Mr. Reilly decided to take advantage of a new wave of laws in Maine and elsewhere that require television and computer manufacturers to recycle their products free of charge. He dropped off his television at an electronic waste collection site near his home and, he said, immediately gained “peace of mind.”

Over the course of that day, 700 other Portland residents did the same.

I have been working, for the last three months of so, on legislation in Texas, of all places, for similar services.  This being Texas, and not Maine, our effort ultimately failed thanks the diabolical pen of one James Richard “Rick” (a.k.a “Jimmy Dick”) Perry.   And his fabulous hair.

More info on that here.

So I spent three months walking the earth, talking to folks, telling them to write their Representative, and their Senator.  And after the bill passed the House and the Senate, I asked folks to write to Rick Perry, and tell that [redacted] they supported the bill.  And they did.  Hundreds of them. Personally, for me, I picked up and delivered over 200 letters.   I know Perry got many, many thousands more.

And then one man with one pen erased that effort.  Or so it would seem, and so it did seem for the week or so after it happened.

Then one day, around last week, as we began to focus our attention on another aspect of the electronics recycling problem (and it is one, don’t kid yourself.  Each American consumes and shits out about five pounds of it a year, and someone has to eat that shit, if we don’t deal with it ourselves) I got my first real achievement in my walking the earth thing.  Rick Perry’sPen had nothing to do with it, and affected it not in the least.

I didn’t say how much would help, or really much more than how much it meant to me that he do something.   The organization with which I am working has an Ultimate Membership Level.   The way the walking the Earth thing works, in the Real World, has a lot to do with talking to people out on the street.  Or, more directly, in their homes.  Hence, there’s a good bit of walking the street, and a good bit of knocking on doors, and some sweet, sweet (and sometimes bitter) bits of talking to folks.  Good, Texas, Folks.  About the Environment and Electronic Waste (which is oh-so-sexy as cause, I know…).

A challenge, to say the least.   As our group is a political lobbying organization, we ask people who agree with what we are doing to help out with the campaign financially.  We have an Ultimate Membership Level.   So to finally continue the real story, I didn’t say how much to help.

I just left a thought, and a pen.   And he used it to erase Rick Perry’s slight, and I realized one pen can’t stop the world from turning.  Not with with so many people walking on it in the same direction.

The direction I walk is toward one of our many possible futures.  The one I aim for is a sustainable future, where we get to have our electronic toys and don’t have to eat them too.

Walk with me, if you would…

….

Anyway, in case anyone is wondering (Hi Mom!) I’ll be walking the Earth tomorrow.  We should hit 100 degrees or so, which is like, boiling, in metric.

peace,

Wah

International and Interstellar, News Update

Here’s the “remainder” for the week.  Just a short blurb and be done with it.

No fence yet for W from Big D.

Former President George W. Bush is officially living in Dallas, as our own Lori Stahl reports.

But a security gate scheduled to be erected on Daria Drive near in Bush’s Preston Hollow home on cul-de-sac Daria Place has yet to go up on the public street.

In fact, Dallas officials say, Bush’s camp has yet to submit gate plans to City Hall’s public works and transportation department — a necessary step before its installation.

Hmmm…him without a gate and me with all these old shoes…what to do…what to do…

Fix the Electric Box. Currently I’m stuck on 14, but should get it eventually.

The Earth as the Moon. Have you ever been on a satellite and seen the Earth eclipse the Sun?  Now you have, thanks Japan!  [peep the video…yes…the Sun is that bright.]

The Galaxy may be full of “Earths”.

The focus of the mission is finding planets in a star’s habitable zone, an orbit that would ensure temperatures in which life could exist. Video Watch a NASA scientist explain the search for habitable planets »

Boss, who serves on the Kepler Science Council, said scientists should know by 2013 — the end of Kepler’s mission — whether life in the universe could be widespread.

Finding intelligent life is a very different matter. For all the speculation about the possibility of other civilizations in the universe, the question remains: If the rise of life on Earth isn’t unique and aliens are common, why haven’t they shown up or contacted us? The contradiction was famously summed up by the physicist Enrico Fermi in 1950 in what became known as the Fermi paradox: “Where is everybody?”

The answer may be the vastness of time and space, scientists explained.

“Civilizations come and go,” Boss said. “Chances are, if you do happen to find a planet which is going to have intelligent life, it’s not going to be in [the same] phase of us. It may have formed a billion years ago, or maybe it’s not going to form for another billion years.”

Luckily, there’s more “people” on this planet than you can ever meet and more organism than you can ever study, so we’re pretty much set as it is.

Heading over the Pakistan…it’s getting shaky.

Pakistan’s Supreme Court has upheld bans on former prime minister and opposition leader Nawaz Sharif and his brother, Shahbaz, from elected office.

Nawaz Sharif’s PML-N party holds power in Punjab province. His brother is chief minister but must now step down.

Nawaz Sharif accused President Asif Ali Zardari of being behind the ban.

Mr Sharif said it was because he would not back down in his campaign to have judges sacked by ex-president Pervez Musharraf reinstated.

The hard part about this one is that it is the new judges that made the ruling.  D’oh!

What to do?

Riot!!!

Thousands of supporters of opposition leader Nawaz Sharif protested in Pakistan Thursday, angered over a court decision banning him and his brother from elected office.

Sharif denounced the Supreme Court ruling, blamed President Ali Asif Zardari, and called for more protests at a rally near the eastern city of Lahore in Punjab province. Around 20 lawmakers gathered outside the Punjab provincial assembly were detained.

Smaller protests also erupted in the capital, Islamabad, where police fired tear gas at a mob trying to block the highway to Punjab province.

[full story]

Pakistan is on the brink.  Believe it.

Japan is sending the ninja after the pirates. You may have thought we put all the ninja to bed during WWII, which we did.  But ninja are tougher than that.

An anti-piracy bill that the government plans to submit to the Diet early next month will enable the use of force by Japan in deterring pirate activities, it has emerged.

The move is expected to spark controversy as the use of force is prohibited under the Constitution. The Self-Defense Forces’ use of force during overseas deployment has been limited to legitimate self-defense and averting imminent danger.

Under the bill, Japanese vessels and foreign vessels will be protected under the anti-pirate measures. Coast guard officials will play a major role in cracking down on pirate activities, and the SDF will only assist them in cases that are beyond the control of the coast guard.

The government seeks to apply Article 7 of the law governing policemen in the line of duty, which enables police officers to use force in order to attack suspects in heinous crimes when they resist or try to flee. By applying the article of the law, the officials to be dispatched for anti-pirate activities will be allowed to use force against pirate ships that refuse orders to stop.

Gotta love loopholes (in bold).

Japan’s PM is also in a bit of hot water for (admitting to) losing to the Americans.

Prime Minister Taro Aso will not retract his remarks that World War II started with Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, it has emerged.

The government decided in a Tuesday Cabinet meeting not to correct remarks that Aso made in a video interview for the Dec. 4, 2008 edition of the Aso Cabinet’s weekly e-mail magazine.

In the interview, Aso remarked: “World War II began with the Pearl Harbor attack in December 1941, but perhaps no one at that time could have imagined that we would have the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty a decade later.”

Sure, WWII actually started with Hilter invading Poland in Europe and all that, but for us and the Japs, the Day of Infamy was the real start of Global Conflict: The Sequel.

Mass layoffs in January.

WASHINGTON – Employers took a large ax to their payrolls in January, the government said Wednesday, and the cuts are likely to get worse over the next few months.

The Labor Department reported that mass layoffs, or job cuts of 50 or more by a single employer, increased to 2,227 in January, up almost 50 percent from the same month last year. More than 235,000 workers were fired in last month’s cuts.

There is a ticking time bomb here, and it’s when these workers unemployment runs out.  If they can’t find jobs, any jobs, by then…things get nasty…quickly.

Oh, and I wanted to do something about this story. It’s actually a really big story…something I need to read a bit more about.  I’ve lived through some of it personally, and investigated professionally (yea…I know this one) another bit of it.  Need to take some time to tell the story correctly.  Maybe this weekend, but it’s a big part of Chapter 11 in my book.  And yes, I’m probably going to quote that article in the my chapter.  It came along right when I wanted it, curiously enough.

And there’s another one making the rounds about a new diet study that says, basically, you are energy and if you eat more energy than you burn, you will get fatter.  If you eat less, you will lose weight, which is painful.  Story at 11.

More Stuff I Won’t Get to Write About, at length (dang editing)

Computer power and intelligence. I actually did a video bit about this one the other night.  Hopefully I’ll get it edited soon.  Simple fact: We DO NOT WANT TO CREATE AN AI!   Really, it would not be a good thing.

What invasive species are trying to tell us.

Shaq isn’t human, he’s dancer. (Thanks, Case!)

Watching Republicans Grieve. O.k. I am actually going to write about this one.

The War in Afghanistan gets personal.

Repeat: Plasma bullets create Northern Lights. Had to look this one up again for the book (dang editing).

Why I Blog…

You end up writing about yourself, since you are a relatively fixed point in this constant interaction with the ideas and facts of the exterior world. And in this sense, the historic form closest to blogs is the diary. But with this difference: a diary is almost always a private matter. Its raw honesty, its dedication to marking life as it happens and remembering life as it was, makes it a terrestrial log. A few diaries are meant to be read by others, of course, just as correspondence could be—but usually posthumously, or as a way to compile facts for a more considered autobiographical rendering. But a blog, unlike a diary, is instantly public. It transforms this most personal and retrospective of forms into a painfully public and immediate one. It combines the confessional genre with the log form and exposes the author in a manner no author has ever been exposed before.

Indeed, and I turned a blog for a month into a book…as an experiment in New Media.  We’ll see how it turns out…I’m very curious to see if it works.

Let’s Start This Off With a Video…

…then I’ll tell you a story about my week.

It was the best of weeks, and it was the worst of weeks.

Sunday: My week started with the end of the football season, as noted here. That was a great game and a great night.  I met a friend during the game that asked me to go to The Killers show on Wednesday.  I agreed.  Some folks also poured water on my laptop, which I didn’t agree with so much.  Laptop dies, and a part of me dies with it.

Monday: Wake to find out the Laptop is still dead.  This is bad news, as I do most of my writing and video and editing and book-related stuff on my laptop.  I am sad.

Tuesday: Run around all day trying to get stuff done without a laptop.  Start messing with the laptop (I have a special power to make computers work again, it’s called “tinkering”) and low and behold, it comes back to life. This makes me very happy.  I find out I am NOT going to the Killer’s show, as my friend has a better friend, or something.

Wednesday:  Check bank account…sad again.  Get call to see if I still want to go to Killer’s show, happy again.  Go to Killers, dance my freakin’ ass off, cheer wildly, have a much better time than the person who asked me to go.  Kinda sad about that.  Still a fun show though. I thought they have the makings of some nice jam/funk band, but usually go back to pop before the jam gets really grooving.   This was probably the best song.

That little dude is a rockstar, no question about it.  And he’s the only one in the band that doesn’t look like he could play in a CCR cover-band and be totally cool with it.

Thursday:  Check bank account…really sad.  Go for a long, intense walk/dance off (I walk like those people in iPod commercials) to figure out WTF to do.  Come to a decision that involves my books, my toys and various stores that buy stuff from people who are in a jam, financially, and haven’t been able to find shit for work since the economy went to hell.  Oh, and people who took a settlement package instead of unemployment insurance, which got extended for people not like me.

Finish walking, toss a coin to decide on quiet night or friends.   Decide to go check on a friend who was nice enough to buy a book.  End up wandering around various bars in Dallas, getting comped, talking about reality with smart people (i.e. my take on it…wrote a book about it), and doing a bit of dancing.  Great day.

Oh, and I also met this guy who is like my long lost brother, but he’s white and I’m black.  Weird, huh?

I also told a couple people why I have such a good time enjoying myself…it has to do with that video I posted first.  I’ve seen too much not to know a good time, and good people, when I see them.  And I know how to dance (both metaphorically and literally).  Plus, I smile a lot because I’m so happy doing fun things with good people.

Friday:  Have a date that was postponed because of some aforementioned internment (got arrested after writing a book and showing it to the wrong people).   Plans change, Stars tickets become available, I put back on the “Wah” jersey and Obama hat (sideways) for some Hockey.  Dallas wins the game 10-2. A totally unbelievable hockey score.  I started screaming for 10 when they made it to seven.  They seemed to like the screaming.  It might be time to start testing for steroids, as the last guy I screamed at in a Dallas sporting event hit me a home run (then got traded to the Yankees).

Saturday:  Sleeping day that turned into a dancing night after a timely text message.  Got to dance my ass off, which I enjoy.  This guys drops some fun stuff. Much better than me, who dropped my debit card at the bar and left it there.  D’oh!   Regardless, a great time was had by all, one would hope….

Sunday: Sleeping day.  Looks at bank account…glad I only spent $20 this week.  Time to get back to work, or something.

Monday: Writing about it all on pirated electrons, and doing some more editing on ye olde Book…which is on sale now…

UPDATE:  I wear this black bracelt (currently with a peace sign) around my right wrist.  I do this to remind myself that no matter how bad it is for me, it’s worst for someone else (RIGHT NOW) and I should keep my whining to a minimum and my attitude pointed in the direction I want to go.

That being said, I’m glad I wasn’t in Australia this week.

Initial reactions to My First Book

So I’ve had enough people read some of my book to realize a couple things.

First, pretty much everyone who reads it says that I’m a quote “good writer.”  Thanks, everyone.  Really.  It’s hard to tell sometimes and get honest feedback.  I had ONE professor in college (a Vietnam vet who taught a class on media interpretations of war) who told me the same thing.   That was really the only encouragement I needed.  Yea, sure, it still took me ten years to actually write a book, but I made it.  And it’s a good read.

The OTHER thing that happens when people read the book is that they stop looking at me the same way they did before they read it.  It’s weird…really weird…my mind is an interesting place.  And I’m not afraid to play with the words a bit.  Which is to say…my book is a mind fuck, and after I’ve mindfucked you…our relationship will most likely change.

No ONE…yet…has read the book in full and asked me honest questions about what it means.  No one.  You might be the first.

The first two people to read it in full had me committed to a mental hospital.  Everyone who has read my “conversation with the Turtle” gets this weird…”my brain just melted”…look on their face.  They look…and I mean this sincerely…dazed and confused after reading it.

Like I said…i’m a good writer…and I write *REAL* philosophy.  You probably haven’t ever read a real philosophy book.  Ludwig Wittgenstein wrote the last one, IMHO, and it mindfucked the world for nearly a hundred years.

The first time I read it…I started doing corrections.

Hello World


Hello World

Originally uploaded by el_wah

Do I look like a writer yet? Maybe a philosopher? Like, a *real* one?

Y’all remember that time that i bartered the *idea* of my book for a great afternoon of beer and discussion? And a *really* shitty football game?

I remember it, like it was yesterday. All of it. Sometimes it just takes a little hint, or 50,000 of ’em.

I’m selling copies of my book for $100 each/and you get to pick the title. Taking pre-orders now.

Delivery should be by the end of the month (of January). Let me know if you have any questions, I came up with a good way of answering them.

Oh, and just to whet your appetite, part of the book is a proof that P=NP (and the obvious corrallary P != NP) and another part of the book is a “graphic novel”.

Oh, and there’s some sex and violence and romance in there as well.

I’m hoping it has rather wide appeal.

Thanks for listening.
peace,
-Roy

UPDATE: I’m giving away the first three chapters for free.  Look up if you can’t find them.  Errr, scroll up.  There is also pre-order information around here somewhere.

In Defense of Love: Part 3: The Fusion

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APPENDIX + : Walking a Mile in Wittgenstein’s Shoes. [note, this is a remix by Roy M. Taylor as-Doerk. I’m sure Witty is cool with it.]

[Aka “In Defense of Love 3: The Fusion”]

Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus

by

Ludwig Wittgenstein [ed: remixed as mentioned. I’m using the red voice. Please also “note” what I pass over in silence and see if I missed anything, would you, Professor?]

Continue reading

In Defense of Love, Part II (the Fusion bit, charging now…)

To catch up to this discussion quickly, one has to but read this post and the comments.

Then this post, and the comments.

And then this post, and the comments. If you do that, you should be all caught up.

In response to my previous post, “In Defense of Love”, I also received an email on the subject from a friend of mine who wishes to remain anonymous.   That email will not be shared in full, but I will quote portions of it here.

As I asked for his permission to share that email, under that condition, and he acquiesced, I will be combining both responses to my “gauntlet” in the response posted here.

Sorry, if this gets a bit confusing, but it is often difficult to catch up to a conversation already in progress, as the Dude once said “Donny, you’re out of your element!”

Once you have caught up, feel free to click/scroll past “the jump” and continue reading…

“The Jump”

Continue reading

In Defense of Love

or as some people call it “Gay Marriage.”

Just a quick follow up to a conversation I’ve been having.  I don’t think this is going to make the first version of the book (although it might, because I like the phrasing). The setup is this post over here (yes, I’ve been engaging in various theological debates lately, why do you ask?).

This is a bit of my linguistic ju-jitsu, at its (IMHO) best.

The set up….

Can someone here quote me on what Jesus said, explicitly, about gay marriage?

And telecom laws, and wireless networks, and nuclear weapons, and stem cells, and evolution?

Thanks, and please make sure those words are in his, please keep the interpretations to yourself.

Yea, Joel, we probably aren’t going to agree on this one. 🙂

The Response…

You are most likely, right, Roy. I don’t believe that He actually addressed the issue directly; however, I do believe that His mission was not to address each and every issue, but to free us from sin.

I like this, because we had already agreed on a rather poignant point regarding the life of Jesus, which I ran into following up my false prophets post earlier (wordpress shares tags and its easy to find people interesting in talking about the same stuff you are).

I had read the bio over at that site for the proprietor and I felt him to be an honest believer, and a capable opponent.  It’s no fun beating up on people who don’t study this stuff, and can make good references and understand others.  He also seems to be a good man, which is important for this kind of stuff.  I found his handling of some “trolls” to be exemplary (check the about and bio pages for a good lesson on how to deal with such blog annoyances.  I usually don’t have that much patience (and I’m a patient man), and go for the virtual throat immediately.)

The Setup….it’s always good to be clear on terms….

Do you consider being gay a sin?

[serious question]

And maybe a bit on why?

Simple, to the point.  Give them enough room to draw the playing field…

I do (as I do corporate greed, among other things). It is against God’s order, His image for Christ and the Church. It is roundly condemned in the Old Testament (and the New – albeit I understand that some will differ with me concerning interpretive issues.) One of the commands in Eden was to multiply. It is impossible for two members of the same sex to multiply naturally.

To be sure, unless you have read the rest of my blog, I do not consider the Christian moral system that I hold to be a political system in any way and would not attempt to push my morality on others – as I also hold to the holiness tradition of the Wesleyans, some Pentecostals, etc…

And then bring in the nuclear weapons (well, recall that I already set us up the bomb, now one can set it off, like in Megaton)

Corporate greed is very well covered in the concept of the “the love of money” thing.

I would counter that “God’s Order” is now understood to be quite a bit more complex than Jesus could ever have understand [sp]. This was my point in bringing up other topics upon which no sermon was ever given. We have a knowledge of the workings of the Universe that far surpasses those of two-thousand years ago. Jesus gave no sermons on quantum mechanics, nor plate tectonics, not did he ever reference such modern and accurate conceptions of how the Universe functions.

I would also counter that the order to “replenish the Earth” has been accomplished and there are now humans everywhere from pole to pole and meridian to meridian. I would further counter that because of our zeal to “replenish” we now have enough humans living such a lifestyle as to put our own planet in peril (at least as a worthwhile ecosystem for our species).

In that context, how can it be a sin to live by one’s nature? In that context, would it not make sense in God’s infinite wisdom to have a class of human that would not add additional pressure to a “replenished” Earth?

There are many other factors that would make it impossible for a couple to multiply, including that disease of “life out of control” called cancer (which can destroy both ovary and teste).

Should they, too, be denied the right of marriage?

I appreciate your understanding of the difference between faith and politics, and am glad to hear it. However, it seems there is quite a bit of interpretation of “God’s Order” being done here that is not backed up by direct statements.

And Deb, if one’s body is a temple, obesity and gluttony are probably the worst and most common sins of the modern world. Yet I don’t see anyone keeping people who have no respect for their own bodies in that regard being considered “sinful.” Nor do I see people using this “sin” to deny them the rights of all other citizens(I realize you aren’t of that slant, polycarp).

And no, Deb, I don’t consider being gay to being in any way similar with being a killer or a thief. I would also ask how many gay people have told you, personally, they chose to be gay [ed. other than in the sense of finally accepting it]  In my experience, that percentage is exactly 0.

I’ve seen love in many forms and that includes the love of a man for a man and woman for a woman.

Do you not see that love, or do you consider it to be false?

I also think we both agree on how using the Old Testament in a discussion of Christ’s teachings is a bit of a non-starter. 🙂

Always end with a smilie.

Maybe a winkie.  Particularly if what you just said might go down sideways.

Question marks are used to trigger the automatic “query” response.  The data is provided and the argument begins to process before one *really* knows what one is reading.

Joel, I eagerly await your response.  As you are thinking, so am I.  Anticipating your next move, and readying my fusion weapons.  😉