Saturday assorted links


#4: Somehow, O thought Me. Rodgers died before the madness of using "they" singular started. My solution if gender is unclear; "it".

Sorry, I meant to begin with "Somehow I thought Mr. Rodger died before............" My only excuse is posting from a phone.

'died before the madness of using "they" singular started'

That would have been around Chaucer's time, then. 'Much has been written on they, and we aren’t going to attempt to cover it here. We will note that they has been in consistent use as a singular pronoun since the late 1300s; that the development of singular they mirrors the development of the singular you from the plural you, yet we don’t complain that singular you is ungrammatical; and that regardless of what detractors say, nearly everyone uses the singular they in casual conversation and often in formal writing.'

What Jordan Peterson would think is unknown, of course, though he appears to be seemingly willing to go to jail as a matter or principle before using an English pronoun the way that Shakespeare would have.

Shakespeare used xer?

Some more text from that article concerning 'they' - 'If you’re someone who has a binary gender (that is, who identifies as male or female) and you’ve never encountered the nonbinary they before, it may feel a little weird. Or you may think it’s unnecessary. You may be confused by all the new terminology (though there’s help out there for you). Yet we’ve been searching for a nonbinary pronoun for quite a while now.

There have always been people who didn’t conform to an expected gender expression, or who seemed to be neither male nor female. But we’ve struggled to find the right language to describe these people—and in particular, the right pronouns. In the 17th century, English laws concerning inheritance sometimes referred to people who didn’t fit a gender binary using the pronoun it, which, while dehumanizing, was conceived of as being the most grammatically fit answer to gendered pronouns around then.'

Admittedly, it is hard to tell if Peterson would use 'it' when referring to someone who does not fit his gender framework.

"What Jordan Peterson would think is unknown, of course, though he appears to be seemingly willing to go to jail"

Don't you mean, "...though *they* appear to be seemingly willing to go to jail?"

Absolutely not, because I respect Peterson's selection and use of his preferred pronoun. Even if I need not fear going to jail for using 'he,' it just seems a simple matter of common courtesy.

Funny you criticize Peterson then. He will also respect your preferred pronoun, he just doesn't call you one that doesn't exist.

So, time to dive a bit deeper into Peterson, again due to this web site.

And yes, it turns out that Peterson does object to the 700 year old use of they as a singular pronoun in English, at least according to this 2016 BBC article - 'He zeroed in on Canadian human rights legislation that prohibits discrimination based on gender identity or expression.

Dr Peterson was especially frustrated with being asked to use alternative pronouns as requested by trans students or staff, like the singular 'they' or 'ze' and 'zir', used by some as alternatives to 'she' or 'he'.

In his opposition, he set off a political and cultural firestorm that shows no signs of abating.'

Of course, I have not watched any of his youtube lectures, so anyone who has is welcome to point out where Peterson embraces the singular pronoun they and only cares about made up pronouns.

3. The very title shows just how anti-business the article is - 'Does Direct Democracy Reduce Regulatory Capture?'

Because clearly, regulatory capture is part of a business friendly environment.

And you have to love the example of how these people hate business - 'To the great mortification of Switzerland’s domestic banking sector, on June 10 Swiss voters will head to the polls to decide on an initiative that could radically hobble local lending. The Vollgeld (sovereign money) Initiative has taken advantage of the country’s famously liberal system of referenda and popular initiatives—the former can be brought to a public vote with just 50,000 signatures to a petition launched by any citizen voter and the latter with 100,000—to propose a ban on fractional reserve banking and restrict money creation to the Swiss National Bank alone. Should the initiative pass, banks will no longer be allowed to expand the money supply electronically through lending—the origin of 90 percent of Switzerland’s current money supply.'

Sounds like someone wants to bring the age of the gold standard back, in a most bank unfriendly way.

3. What is "business-friendly"? Asking business what is business-friendly is equivalent to asking a horny teenager what is friendly. Is the latest Republican tax cut business-friendly? Most businesses supported it and consider it business-friendly. Are tariffs on imports business-friendly? Trump's economists and supporters certainly do. Of course, the consequences of policies one supports are often the opposite of what one expects.

Who do you want to ask what is "business-friendly", if not businesses themselves?

Now whether a given "business-friendly" measure is good (for the economy, for the nation, for the people, for the world, whatever) is another question entirely.

Business-friendly is sometimes regulatory capture, which might be bad, sometimes pro market, which is usually good. If a study does not distinguish between the two, it doesn't tell us whether referenda are good or bad. Anti-business is more often bad, but if referenda are merely anti capture and usually not anti market, they might yet be good.

#5: generally a pretty respectable list, except that club sandwiches are a great way for us gluttons to eat a sandwich and a half without looking a glutton, and a pumpkin spice latte is great every once in a while. Don't @ me bro!

Lemire is overrated. I say this because this ridiculous list gets mentioned here.

VR is ubiquitous 18 months from now? I don't think that word means what he thinks it means. But, look, only 10 years ago we were using iPhones, and we are already still using iPhones. Still, just ask Magic Leap, they are gonna launch real soon now.

Maybe there's some Y2K bug in his blog.

No no, you see, 2020 is the future, and we'll obviously have tons of cool stuff by then. I mean, just say "2020" aloud and hear how futuristic it sounds. I doubt we'll even have anything so archaic as a club sandwich in such a distant time.

Hindsight is 2020.

#6. What Anthony Bourdain hated.

Life. And originality.

I'm really concerned about the effect glorification of suicide has on people on the brink and on society as a whole.

Suicide is an impulsive decision. We don't need the media blaring out tributes to suicides.

I really think we need to bring back the shame of suicide for the good of society. I've had severely depressed family members who've attempted suicide and this kind of crap bothers the hell out of me. This guy and Kate Spade, need to be seen as losers by society (regardless of the truth of it) to protect people on the brink.

A society that glorifies suicide as honorable (e.g., Japan) or tragic (USA) is setting itself up for disaster.

So, I'll do my part. Bourdain was a lucky enough to make a great life for himself eating food and talking about it. He had it better than 99.99999% of humans through all of history, but still wasn't happy, so he chose to choke himself after hearing about some loser bag designer do it. This is what I will remember him for.

"I really think we need to bring back the shame of suicide for the good of society."

Or maybe we should stop thinking about what other people must do "for society". A society of busybodies is setting itself and those who deal with it for tragedy (WW II Japan, for example).
"There's no such thing as society." -- Margareth Thatcher

Can I stick my dick up your nose?

No, you can't.

But I bet you’d like it.

The question I ask myself is what I can be doing to make the world a better place. If you don't believe that's your responsibilities, that is absolutely fine. Many people are just struggling to make it, and making the world a better place is just too much to ask of them. Think of the telemarketers in call centers in India and Pakistan, making our phones unusable, and making the world a worse place to live in, just so they can make ends meet.

My comments on what's good for society was meant for people who can and want to try to improve the world with individual action. It was not meant as a call to arms to gather the world's busybodies to form a censorship board and dictate what the medica can publish.

I am pretty sure people musing about what OTHER PEOPLE must do are very concerned about society. That they chose the most useless, self-righteous course of action is just a happy coincidence.

Bourdain was a lucky enough to make a great life for himself eating food and talking about it. He had it better than 99.99999% of humans through all of history, but still wasn't happy...

He actually says that in the Buenos Aires/therapy episode of Parts Unknown.

He also says that the only person he can communicate with is his 8-year-old daughter. She is now 11 and was probably getting harder to connect with.

"I'm really concerned about the effect glorification of suicide has on people on the brink and on society as a whole."

Yes. I was struck by this comment at Reason:

The many loving, humorous tributes to Bourdain that look away from the selfishness and awfulness of what he has inflicted on his 11-year-old daughter -- I fear those tributes are going to encourage rather than discourage those who might emulate him. Kill yourself and, apparently, what will follow is an outpouring of empathy, respect, and love (at least if you're a celebrity).

This may just be my lack of culture, but I had never heard of this Bourdain guy or that bag maker woman (I have already forgotten her name) before their suicides, which have therefore, at least marginally, improved their fame.

The twenty "dislikes" of Bourdain in the link are moderately funny, sometimes right, but in total nothing worth remembering. The style though, a little bit like Nietzsche's aphorism (no explanation, shaming of people who disagree) is refreshing, but this is compensated by the warm and thick shower of kitch and love poured by every news media since his death.

Well I guess we know of some potential reasons why he necked himself. Maybe he had shitty room service that night?

Even though he was not British, I am afraid the first thing I thought of was auto-erotic asphyxiation. Like the guy from INX.

Which is, I suppose, better than calling in the maid and jerking off into a pot plant which seems to be what Dominique Strauss-Kahn did. Although in both cases timing and pressure are probably more important than they originally thought.

As selfish as leaving his daughter was, at least he did not write a passive aggressive suicide note to her blaming her mother. Which seems to be what the hang bag woman did.

>Though it may not be allowed in all countries, there will be “lawyer” AIs that can provide legal advice on par with what the average human lawyer in 2000 was able to provide.

5: and in 2026 the absurdity of computers doing legal work sinks in and no one bothers. Bureaucratic organizations from the school board, social security, the EPA, to the FDA routinely clear out your bank account and seize your property on a whim that the rationale for legal transfers disappear. Better to not have it written down.

Hah, computers are *more* likely to do that than our human legal class?

#5 Professor Lemire missed the impending Zombie Apocalypse, which will queer most of his prognostications.

6 I set out poison to get rid of the mice at home. One of them decide to walk to the middle of the hallway and proceed to die very slowly. My daughter was four at the time.

I haven't been allowed to use poison side and we have a live trap for larger critters.

Maybe he ordered a room service hamburger.

I advise that you don't leave poison around a four-year-old

#6 good, this piece helps to find the most probable cause of death: room service.

#5 If my AI lawyer performs an illegal operation, will he/she/it/they be shut down, be reinitialized or jailed? What about software bugs? "My lawyer has advised me to plead hgrewsrtys".

I'm drastically less optimistic compared to Lemire regarding the rate of technological progress. In six years, he's predicting practical brain-computer interfaces and the ability to postpone dementia indefinitely. In 12 years he's predicting (at least) 10x better battery tech. So instead of a 2k mAh battery in my phone, I'll have a 20k mAh battery. In 22 years he predicts "Her" will come to pass, where people are frequently "friends" with AI.

Sorry, not buying it.

It seems Prof. Lemire believes high cost will motivate technological progress (fuels and energy; professional services). This makes sense from first principles, but the most commercially viable technological progress in recent years has been about making cheap things easy and/or hella cheap (talking; writing to each other; playing games).

#6) We knew you would come through with a post. We'll miss Tony.

“Productivity and Pay”? When regulators allowed banks to hold extremely little capital against anything perceived, decreed or concocted as safe, shareholders were made much less relevant, which opened up immense opportunities for immense banker bonuses.

#5 All technological predictions. Nothing about crime, income inequality, immigration, wars, geopolitical conflicts, aging population.
For battery technology, he predicts at least 10x improvement from 2030 to 2010. That's > 12% a year . I think in the 2010s so far the improvement has been more like 5% a year ( energy density).

Anthony Bourdain was a King, you are all cucks don’t forget it!

I simply can't accept Mister Rogers' changes. Anyone who is a true fan knows that Neighbor Aber shot first. Period.

3. Restoring force?

4. What a beautiful man who cared deeply about finding the beauty in each of us.

6. Pretentiousness for silly things.

#5. Who the frak is Lemire and why would anyone have any reason to take his rose-colored, utopian predictions seriously? Where are the artificial wombs? Fusion reactors? Quantum computers? We need 100X batteries, not 10X (although 10X would be more than a little significant and there are some promising 5X+ technologies being studied, so he may prove right on that one.) His 3D printing prediction is a swing-and-miss, imho. Has the logic of economies of scale been refuted? It isn't simply information which makes larger scale production less expensive. It is possible that by 2030 the world's fisheries will be collapsing, mass human migrations will be overwhelming what used to be called "national borders", antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal resistance will be ubiquitous and average life expectancy will be in precipitous decline. By then two nuclear "wars" (exchanges) will have occurred and several human made bioagents once again reducing indigenous populations (except this time most of us are indigenous). Literacy will also be declining, who reads anymore? Most democracies will have failed (see previous) and group rights will have replaced human rights as the value norm.

A more likely future is that everything stays pretty much like it is now with small barely detectable improvements in stuff (the usual 2% per year productivity and other improvements) that add up to lots of change over decades, but mostly in terms of quality of life of the top 1% today becoming more available to large chunks of the population, and then suddenly, probably in space of a year, AI starts to bootstrap itself and we enter a totally radical rate of change probably quickly leading to the end of the human race. I hope I live to see it though - it will be cool.

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