This American Life . . . 500th episode

Hola!

If you are not a listener to This American Life – I can only recommend listening to this, the 500th episode.

Incredible, punchy radio.

Enjoy.

Big luv Slim

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Reds – The movie

Thirty years on an EPIC. Yes, Hollywood. But also please scrub the time it was set in and the era it was filmed in, it is now. Choose your level: humanism, cycles, country, environment, creed, economics, colonialism, cruelty, ideological colour, capitalism, politics, communism and love. Choose what you will, it was called Reds, but this film has every colour permeating it.

It ties into a mention on Camus:

“A freeman is somebody who refuses both to engage in terrorism and to endure it.”

http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/reds/or find it on Vuze.com or another stream,

Big luv Slim

 

 

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Austerity: You cannot solve a solvency issue with a liquidity tool . . . . and other gems.

Hi there,

an excellent lecture, (shooting from the hip, as I haven’t managed to fully digest it), that is broad in its scope, lucid in its delivery, amusing in its irony – not least the slagging of Locke, Hume and Smith by a fellow scot – illuminating on economics philosophers, the catastrophic dangers of banks (and money) and our self-serving political masters.

You can check out the lecture notes here. Warning standby to “rewind” the podcast to re-listen.

Some gems . . . debt is an investment . . . 86% of German GDP is . . . Deutsche Bank (and they lied about their losses)!  Quantitative easing is an indication of the failure of a political system.  Economists being the mouthpiece of the political and economic elites at [their] stupidest!

It is also very scary when taken in historical context . . . reaping a whirlwind.

Enjoy this however and have a lovely day,

Big luv Slim

 

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Two fascinating interviews – on Hugo Chavez and pregnant women in the US.

A sympathetic and cogent discussion on Hugo Chavez, his actions and his possible legacy.  Interestingly the reversal of role of South America from US sponsored backyard peopled by dictators and torturers to group of states that are growing and free standing has been given light by the report of Soros Foundation in which it was reported that South America was the only region that did not host US rendition, torture or black sites.

Abortion – yikes a fraught and tricky subject on many levels.  Nowhere is it more tricky and, even worse, predicated on “common sense” (as opposed to peer-reviewed data) than the US.  A shocker of a story.  Smacks rather of the “rage to punish” as seen in my Gareth Pierce post.

Best aye, Slim

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A hoot of a lecture on leadership and democracy; PTSD, fearlessness and their links to abuse

A really fascinating (if fast spoken) 50 minute lecture dealing with democracy and its interaction with leadership. The lecturers pick their way through the different types of democracy and different types of leadership.

All you ever needed to pull away from any inclination to run for public office.  Or all the more reason to embrace it if you are a hand-on-heart Tony Blair, Chris Huhne or John Howard.

There is a tenuous link between the lecture and this interview.  It is funny how parents and other people in authority don’t listen.  I suspect they have given up the idea of respecting those beneath them if they ever had it.  So chance your arm at this 50 minute interview with Dr. Jessica Stern.  She didn’t realise why she was so fearless.  Well, she has helped me understand why I was fearless in the past.   I also understand when she said her father didn’t listen to her.

Enjoy, yours sleepily, Slim

 

 

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Aaron Swartz: prosecution or persecution. The reality of the “american dystopian experiment”.

Hello there,

it has been some time since I posted anything. Too many frying pans and too many fires!

Please have a 20 minute listen to this discussion on Aaron Swartz.

Fascinating.

Salaams Slim

 

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New Frontiers in the digital age

Here are a couple of programs outlining two diverse new frontiers.

The first frontier is a program on drones, not the drones of war, but off-the-shelf civil surveillance devices.  This will have ramifications for both for privacy and legislation.

The second program is an analysis of High Frequency Trading, or robot trading, that is causing upset on the stock markets.

And a couple of pieces that are slightly off subject but nevertheless:

A chat about war drones. Obama ordered his first drone strike within three days of entering the White House and the victims were innocent.  And more.

And another on how nature is fighting back through the law against ecological mismanagement – and some interesting analysis of the “apartheid” nature of our thinking on nature . . .

Hope all’s well, have been busy, salaams Slim

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Degustation radio!

Radio with some great flavours – all from the same LNL program.

As an entrée Bruce Shapiro on US politics this week – with a side-ways glance on 9-11.  Read the comments on this page.  I know plenty of intelligent, worldly-wise Americans who just don’t want to confront the idea that their own government might have . . .  attacked their own nation state – how bizarre (and there is probably a monstrous irony involved), at a time when the nation state is struggling for survival – I only wish I could be around in 30/50 years when the documents are released.

The plat is Joumana Haddad talking . . . fascinating interview.

For dessert Janine di Giovanni talking about Bosnia and Syria and how war messes you up.

Salaams Slim

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A great story on Brazil 2016

It also gives me the opportunity to address the memory of PF.  PF was not one of those people who stood by and watched bullies bullying.  He was shot and killed in a hold-up in Brazil 20 years ago this year.  In this instance he wasn’t standing up to a bully, it was a robbery with tragic consequences.  He inspires me to this day.

So this 20 minute story is like a breathe of fresh air.  Brazil defeating inflation. Brazil reducing violence. Brazil lifting 30-40 million out of poverty. Brazil having borders that march with 9 (or 10?) other South American countries and yet manages to avoid wars. Brazil’s ex-President Cardoso who makes Tony Blair look like the slime ball he is. Brazil having a 20 year governmental planning cycle for eradicating poverty, education etc.  Brazil rev’d up as hosts for the 2014 football world cup and then for the 2016 Olympics.

There is plenty here that was new to me and, I suspect, to many in the Occident including our hubristic politicians. Great story, great interview, enjoy.

Salaams Slim

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A new Club of Rome Report … Crisis? What crisis? The real bottom line of capitalism!

An analysis of where the world will be in 40 years time. Well, it is certain that by then we shall have a world 2’c hotter than it is now – taking us back to a climate last seen at the time of the dinosaurs.

Agricultural productivity will decline and there is a likelihood of catastrophic planetary demographic collapse from 9 billion to a few hundred million – and that is the median option.

And sadly there will be no useful response from our leaders in a capitalist/democratic system.  We might do something to avert a negative future if there was a . . . profit involved.  Maybe that should be on our collective tombstone . . .  the bottom line of consumerism/capitalism is likely to be: we all died for a profit!

Salaams Slim

 

 

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Analysis of the Julian Assange situation by Four Corners

Here’s an Australian expo of the Assange case – Sex, Lies and Julian Assange.

Enjoy, salaams Slim

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“Economists are tone-deaf to history” – haha one might also say some other things!

Also in this excellent interview you will find a discussion elaborating right, left, neo-classical and neo-liberal thought, climate change and its options.

Cannot recommend it more.

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Two interesting (to me) stories: Oh, not soil again? And, is there a radical hope in our blind spot?

Well, a blast from the past here as I heard Rattan Lal’s name in the line-up.  Who?  Lal is a world renowned soil scientist who’s work features heavily in the background to my work today.  Pithy stuff such as, solve the soil carbon issue and you will solve carbon sequestration issues and hence climate change . . .  but strangely no-body wants to listen.  Why not make a difference and have a listen.  You can even comment here or at the source.

And linked somehow, but not necessarily in any way that I can identify spritely at this late hour, is this story on the ethics of societal collapse.  What is your blind spot?  Have a listen to a discussion on the Crow indian collapse after they went onto the reservation. It might hasten your decision to investigate our collective blind spot.  And a radical hope might make a triumvirate with NO and Bob.

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Julian Assange Interview on LNL

The scope of extra-judicial action, hypocrisy, political inactivity are evident, and stink, in this interview.  But there are some unusual heroes to be found in this 30 minute interview.

I am not sure how I would stand up to the same treatment.  Hats off to Julian Assange.  A truly brave man.

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Quote: “Cycles of fasting were working as well as chemotherapy”.

Don’t most scientists, and all people for that matter, love to cherry-pick their data to support their arguments?  Ok, I’ll own that one. And cherry-picking is something that we would all have done over our hunter-gatherer history.

The quote in the title comes from this 8 minute podcast. The professor has found that the synergy between fasting and chemo is very impressive. All the more impressive was the statement that fasting was just as effective as chemo in some cancers for example breast cancer. Really, just fasting was as good as chemo?  I am not sure if the health industry will be endorsing this.

My interest in this was triggered by my understanding that it has just been 2 generations since we were engulfed by the digital age.  That it has been 7 generations since the industrial generation swept the planet.  We have lived for 350 generations with agriculture.  All these figures pale into insignificance when you consider that there have been 84,000 generations since we became hominids about 2.5 million years ago.  And we were developing as mammals since way before that.

So we have lived with agriculture for under half of one percent (0.41%) of our evolution.  Before we became consumers of agricultural product we were hunter-gatherers for 99.59% of our evolution.

If we were hunter-gatherers for most of that time I suggest that we are also hunter-gatherers now (with perhaps some fine tuning). As hunter-gatherers we would have had to become accustomed to an irregular food supply. So we are now hunter-gatherers in a time of bounty – and many people believe this could be a contributory factor to the increases in “western diseases”.

Here comes the cherry-picking – the possible hypothesis of the benefits of fasting regarding cancers are that cancer cells cannot survive a changing environment and so go through apoptosis – cell death – when the environment changes.  Healthy cells can withstand a changing environment.  Ergo as hunter-gatherers we are as habituated to a cycle of feast and famine as are our cells.  So perhaps rather than dieting why not just make your eating regime more irregular.  In fact as the professor says we can survive for 40 days without food.  To cover a short term famine we carry 2000 calories of glycogen (about a day’s energy requirement) in our muscles and liver – with such a store there is little likelihood of us collapsing in the street..

Setting to one side two of the spear points of the trident of our collective Western eating disorder (our munching carbohydrate rich grains and our lack of exercise), can the third spear point be that we eat too regularly? So now plagued with endless bounty our poor hunter-gatherer’s metabolism falters and develops diseases?

Furthermore, leaving to one side the possibility that the grain based diet of our agricultural heritage is perhaps at odds with our innate hunter-gatherer.  Western society has so inculcated us into the necessity of three square meals a day that we become anxious if we miss a meal or two.  And missing the odd meal might be what we really need to do to kill cancer cells and to stay healthy.

Salaams Slim (Pickings)

Furthermore – another article by the same professor – with some cautionary words.

 

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Humans

Many people think that humans are the greatest, highest evolved, wisest, cleverest of the animals on the planet.  Some even claim that we are made in God’s image.  I tend to disagree; we are just an ape who has, by good fortune, evolved with an opposing thumb.  Take a walk in the bush in Africa towards sunset to experience the reality that we are the slowest, clumsiest, and most senseless (as in our lack of highly tuned senses) of the animals present – it is a scary place, especially without a rifle or a torch.

Salaams Slim

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The Posterity Law – revising the actions of our “representatives”.

Just an idea.

We have a world, one world.  It is finite.  It is longterm.  Eons.  Think of the time it takes to evolve.

We have a number of political systems; and the general rules governing them might be: immediate, personal and short-term.

Is there no way in which we can suspend the statute of limitations? The statute of limitations can be roughly explained as a law (or statute, in this case) that prevents a person, who has been damaged, from bringing a case against the damaging person outside a three year period.

So we have a disjunct between two systems.  The planet and the systems upon it.

You might with climate change, rampant consumerism, defunct capitalism think that there is nothing wrong.  Or you might think that there is a problem.

I tend towards the latter.  And as such I am trying to come up with an idea where politicians who make short term decisions when they know that there are long term implications are held to account for their actions – simple really.

So the points to be proved are:  Knowledge of the implications? Sidelining of data? Blatant lies?

Shooting from the hip, I call for a new law on the statute books of nations and super-national bodies that allows for politicians that work to a short-term agenda to be held to account.  There should be tribunals at national and international levels that meet and review the actions of politicians at 5, 10, 15 and 20 year points after the actions were taken.

Politics, power and the world have changed.  The impact of an individual’s action can be huge.  I think that actions, both the good and bad, done by such people needs to audited and either lauded or reproved.

Salaams Slim

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Syria – an antidote to the “infant media” coverage.

Hi there,

here are a couple of interesting comments.  Depending on your available time there are two avenues to follow – or you may decide to investigate one and then consider approaching the other.  Firstly, you might consider listening to a 25 minute chat on LNL which gives airtime to Jeremy Warner (assistant editor of the Daily telegraph) and Prem Shankar Jha (from The Hindu).  The two discussions are ostensibly on the new BRICS Bank, the more interesting part that I highlight in my title, is in the second half of Prem’s where the discussion moves on to Syria.

If you have more time you can read the backing articles by the two authors – Jeremy Warner’s and Prem Shankar Jha’s.

For me the differences between the two, when discussing the BRICS Bank, illuminates the differences between the mindset between the East and the West.  And it all hinges on the mind that is behind the opinion.  The West’s economies have been stagnating, if taken without the liberalisation of the financial markets, since the late 70s/early 80s.  And this is reflected in the mindset/opinion of the Telegraph editor – conservative and braking.  The BRICS are thriving and accelerating and this is reflected in Prem Jha’s standpoint.

The latter’s opinion on Syria (and the seemingly uncontrollable militarism of the West) reflects my understanding of Syria.  The colour palette required to paint a picture of Syria (you might substitute the US here) has a diverse and often times conflicting array of pigments.  As ever it is the “infant media”, at the beck and call of their owners and in line with their own lifetime trajectory, that paints a childishly simplified picture for the western public.

For those with an interest in differing analysis I cannot recommend more highly some of the reportage that comes out of sub-continent – type “India” into the search field on this blog and you will find other sources/comments.

Enjoy, Slim

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More big, fat lies

If you saw the post below on Diets you might already have found this summary of the book.  If you haven’t here it is.

If you are too lazy to read or listen – basically avoid seed oils!

Enjoy . . . your fat-filled and sugar free diet!

Slim (?)  Pickings

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Eloquent, articulate, intelligent – the only face of Julian Assange

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

If you can, take the time to listen to this 25 minute interview with Julian Assange by Norman Swan.  Also you might take the time to read some of the comments – there is some drivel but there are some interesting points too.

Big luv Slim

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