Wednesday, July 29, 2015

"Right now we could all be reading a book"

Not that I read.

But this line from the Boondocks cracked me up.

I like the Boondocks because it has almost nothing to do with the white man. When he does feature he'll be voiced by Samuel L Jackson, or he'll be a cruel punchline. Exploitative, mean and ignorant. A good enjoyable burn in other words, and I think in it's most sensitive and fair treatment of white racism, the Boondocks portrays accurately how little racists care.

Where it is great is on it's commentary of activism, where it has been itching a scratch of mine exacerbated in recent times by actually reading my facebook newsfeed.

I think more than any other series I've ever seen the boondocks demonstrates that there are morons on both sides of any debate, including the right side and they undermine actual progress.

Take the institutional racism in the American judicial system. Because african Americans are disproportionately convicted (and arrested, and probably advised to take plea deals) but the show satirize R Kelly's underage sex tape going to court and defense building a case around Kelly being a victim of racism.

Or having Martin Luther King Jr awake from a coma and criticize current bslack culture as being symptomatic of their oppression.

I cant really disect a show i couldn't write myself and could never execute. But I needed to see it.

My social network crowd is a progressive crowd, left leaning liberal bias. Thankfully most aren't activists (social media activists) and none so far as I'm aware are conspiracy nuts that worry about the gold standard being defunct and shit.

For example, you're on the right side of Australian history if you are pro marriage equality and pro meeting our human rights signatory status on asylum seekers.

But you are confused if you call yourself a 'real Australian' to welcome refugees. Or think it necessary to counter protest a protest people that aren't protesting any actual legislation, in a country that has already voted and ridiculed the one nation party out of existence. And you are confused if you applied the rainbow filter to your facebook profile picture and then bandy terms like Islamophobia around for people who are protesting sharia law.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015


Thinking takes energy, so if you can avoid it your brain will. And hopefully that last sentence helps you avoid having to read Daniel Kahneman's very thorough book 'thinking fast and slow'.

One way we commonly avoid thinking is to use 'substitution' which is when faced with a difficult question that requires effort to answer, we substitute the question for an easier one and then use the answer to the easier question.

It's a really common mental habbit. And it conserves a lot if energy, furnishing us with 'good enough' think using 3.14 instead of the actual number of pi.

The most problematic substitution though are the hard questions, the example from the book was this:

How happy are you with your life over past 6 months?

How happy are you with your sex life over the past 6 months?

Presented in this order responses don't correlate, peoples consider each question, reverse the order suddenly the answers do correlate.

Sex life bad = overall life bad. Can do it with career as well.

What i feel i see is that this doesn't apply just to filling out questionnaires but when it comes to actually trying to solve the problems of what to do with our lives. Even though the moments may be just as fleeting, it translates to decisions and translates to actions.

Figuring out what will make us happy is a hard complex simultaneous equation with at least 6 variables to solve for anddealing in absract rather than concrete terms.

How to achieve happiness = hard. How to achieve status = easy.

At least the how to part.

Take any wayward 20 something and what advice is offered them? Go back to school and change career (or become a career academic), or just plain get a job. If the job isn't the obvious solution it'll be a relationship, specifically - get one. Or get laid depending onthe coothness of your vizier.

I'm not saying career and relationships aren't crucial components of happiness. Perhaps though that is why sex and money are the two main indicators of status.

A career that makes you happy winds up requiring a lot of things working in concert and money isn't necessarily going to be in the mix, let alone significant.

Sex may feature in your most important relationships, but it's unlikely to define over the long run. Conversation is. Again complicated.

But how many people in their internal lives carry a status objective as their priority?