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Everything posted by lemur

  1. I agree that people are too quick to assume that fruit is natural and therefore automatically healthy. Still, there may be some nutrients in fresh fruit that are not in concentrated corn-syrup. Many fruit juices do not seem that much healthier than soda, imo, except for maybe the vitamins/anti-oxidants. Add to the list of problems with sugar that it stimulates growth of yeast and who knows what else in your bodies tissues and membranes. Personally, I feel much healthier drinking water regularly to flush out whatever is in my kidneys and rehydrate tissues without saturating them in sugar. Also, the more accustomed people get to drinking sweet liquids, the less capable they are of enjoying the taste of water. This, in turn, causes them to avoid water, which is needed to flush the waste products from digesting all that sugar they are drinking whenever they're thirsty.
  2. Maybe what he means by past/present/future being dimensions is that the past exists as accrued change, future as range of all possible events accessible from the present, and the present as the actual energies and forces that contain the residues and potentialities of the past and future, respectively. This would be like the diagram of time that has two cones joined at their points where the present is the plane that intersects with the point between the two cones. I don't know if this model makes time any more multidimensional, but maybe it's worth thinking about.
  3. My favorite line from the Star Wars movies comes from Yoda: "Difficult to see. Always in motion is the future." If a being is omniscient, then they would know exactly what can and can't be known (yet), and the parameters for when variables reach a point of determinance. If an omniscient being sees a statue rocking, for example, they would know exactly at what point it was possible to know whether the statue would fall or not, but they still might not know until that point whether it would indeed fall or settle in an upright position.
  4. lemur


    Imagine you could create a spacecraft that can make it past the farthest galaxy. If you made it past there, I believe spacetime would curve back in the direction of the gravitational source closest to you. You would basically have nowhere to go except back to the galaxy or another galaxy. You could expend your fuel trying to see how far beyond the galaxy you could make it, and you might be able to do that for quite a long time, but gravitation only keeps decreasing (i.e. it never reaches zero). So when you finally gave up accelerating (e.g. because you ran out of fuel), your inertia might maintain a level of momentum that prevented you from decelerating, but your trajectory would slowly bend/curve back in the direction of the nearest gravity-well and eventually you'd either end up in orbit around it or you'd fall completely back into it. This is my idea of what happens, but maybe someone else will say I'm wrong for some reason.
  5. The problem is not so much with free trade itself. The problem is with the global division of labor that results. This effectively amounts to hordes of consumers exploiting hordes of workers divided at the ethno-national level. My impression is that as consciousness of this exploitative nature of global capitalism grows, it creates resentment and the desire for freedom/independence among people who feel their lives are dedicated to serving rich westerners. This is not to say that many people don't like the opportunity to produce exports. It's just that when the goal of achieving economic independence doesn't come quickly (or at all), people lose faith in the system. Then ask yourself what possibility there is for everyone on Earth to live like a middle-class westerner when doing so requires that loads of workers accept lower wages? Free trade would be great if it was really free. It would be if the global free market was actually an idyllic type of Adam Smith economy where everyone freely entered and exited markets and jobs at will instead of being manipulated by debt, agreements, contracts, etc. that lead to people ending up in jobs and contracts that they're not really happy with. In a true free market, there's not supposed to be any will to exercise top-down power, but in practice I have the idea that free trade is used for exactly that purpose. Ideally, though, if it was really free it would be great.
  6. All Obama would really have to do to look very good would be to come up with plans about how to achieve goals while reducing spending. If he and the left generally would do this, ppl would not trust them immediately but if they demonstrated that it was possible in practice, they could impress people. The problem is that fiscal budgeting is a catch-22. On the one hand, many people want to see government-spending cut but only because they think it will mean more money in their pockets because of lower taxes. What people don't seem to get is that government-spending cuts have a trickle-down effect that stimulates everyone to tighten their budgets. If people were true fiscal conservatives, public and private, they would be happy with this effect. But in practice, people get grumpy when their own money supply gets cut down, even though they wanted the government to constrict the flow of spending. Ideally, people would vote for levels and types of spending that would be both fiscally conservative and responsibly conducive to qualitative economic goals, but no one can really agree to what such economic goals should entail other than increasing their own income. So politics continues in this odd holding pattern of arguing over spending-levels while talking about policy-goals that are only really pursued in theory and only get implemented in practice to the extent they can be made to fill people's pockets with money.
  7. I assume you mean free international trade and not free domestic trade or free interstate trade, etc. I think what most people complain about with free trade is that competition from workers/businesses oriented toward a lower cost-of-living are able to offer better bargains on products. So, for example, if rent costs, say, $20/month for a worker in Malaysia or Mexico, US-based workers and businesses feel that they cannot fairly compete. What is confusing to me is why the people who want to protect domestic markets from foreign competition don't advocate devaluation of the US dollar relative to other currencies. Doing this would effectively make US prices more competitive globally. It seems like on the one hand, those who are against free trade want to in-source everything to domestic producers and, on the other hand, they want to keep the US dollar highly valued to maintain cheap imports. Well, if you want to have access to cheap imports, then you're not really in-sourcing to domestic workers/businesses, are you?
  8. Establishing territory rights implies that anyone is going to just back off and leave someone else to do whatever they want with their part of the moon because it is theirs. More likely, there will be numerous voices expressing various interests, many of them just interested in conserving the moon in its relatively natural state. Still, people will probably be able to agree on certain uses, in which case some specific business ventures may be pursued, such as a vacation resort, scientific laboratory, etc. I think the reason we're talking about sending ppl to Mars instead of the moon is because Mars has some atmosphere a day/night cycle and near-Earth gravitation. There's also plenty of rust to recycle into steel.
  9. Obamacare is just a typical solution that reinforces the core of the problem, which is that health care costs are kept high by an excess of available funds, which in turn stimulates providers to take advantage of the available funding by creating as many health care goods and services as possible and charging the highest price possible for them. This is great for stimulating people to go into health care professions but it's terrible for expanding health-care accessibility to a level of universal global accessibility. If you want to create affordable health care for anyone, no matter how poor, you have to have extremely affordable goods and educational materials. That way anyone could gain access to medical information and goods regardless of their ability to pay for it.
  10. It's as if you think that religion is optional instead of a basic facet of human existence. I think you just define certain belief systems as religious while believing that others are secular. What you should do is isolate the cognitive functions that get expressed by religious activity and ask whether it is possible to eliminate those without destroying human functionality.
  11. Then you're braver than I am. I always "really don't want to get stung," and I have never used my hand - always use a stick or something that keeps distance between me and the wasp's nest. Maybe over-cautious but even a single wasp-sting is painful enough to make the extra effort, imo.
  12. You are both basically right, imo. He has a good point that Christ preached faith in revelation through the holy spirit (direct inner revelation as opposed to revelation through religious orthodoxy/authority). Christ was opposed/persecuted from two general forms of authority: 1) religious authority (pharises) and 2) secular authority (Pontius Pilate). Together, the two forms of authority represented suppression of direct individual revelation of ethical/moral truth. You are right, imo, in the sense that guilt is the result of "man-made laws and 'inner spirit' being in conflict." Maybe it is a radical constructionist interpretation, but I think that you could ultimately interpret the story of Adam and Eve as describing the inner-process of experiencing one's actions as sin by one's own definition of sin. In other words, you could say that for some reason, people come to a point where they become self-aware of themselves and their actions as being in conflict with what they believe is good. At that point they experience shame and the desire to hide themselves from view. Ironically, it doesn't matter what the source of their feeling of transgression was. All that matters is that they transcend the feeling of total innocence that feels like living in paradise. You can blame this feeling of "falling from grace" on authority external to them, but I wonder if people wouldn't eventually develop this feeling even in total isolation from others. I think it is just part of human development that people come to the point of questioning their own legitimacy and guilt/shame emerges from that questioning.
  13. Is there any way to get more storage capacity per unit weight of batteries? I have often wondered how much room for advancement there is in this area.
  14. You're more cautious than I am. I don't wait for cold and I just knock the nest down with a long stick and sprint as far away as possible immediately afterward. Thanks for the concern for my pain-exposure though:)
  15. What it ultimately comes down to is that there are other reasons to reduce fossil-fuel dependency and the types of energy-uses that have become institutionalized as a result of high fossil-fuel availability in the last century or so. A sail-driven ship is better than one driven by combustion because it is a fuel-independent vehicle. Bicycles are more efficient than motor vehicles in light of their ratio of power to speed. The only reason that these technologies are considered inferior is because of their size (relatively small) and speed (relatively slow). Ultimately, however, these technologies are like the tortoise racing against the hare. Fossil-fuel combustion has made its show of power and now it is going to slowly sputter to a halt to sit and watch the slower but more efficient technologies ease by into the more distant future.
  16. It's not. The question is whether people should have awareness and choice to organize/structure their educational and economic activities in other ways. And individuals tend to orient toward institutional structuring in a relatively passive way. I.e. they come to view themselves as subsidiaries of organizations instead of agents organizing their own life activities and interactions.
  17. I will not pretend that I think I'm perfect or that I have expertise in your field. My critical thinking is not epic imo; it's just my approach as opposed to acceptance of any and all orthodoxy. I'm trying to base my learning on reason instead of source-validation. I just explained that so you wouldn't take it so personally. I value your explanations and discussion and I don't see you as mindlessly spouting knowledge you've learned dogmatically. I will apologize for my contribution to this bickering we've gotten into because I don't find it enjoyable or productive. I'm sorry if I haven't been as alert to the nuances of many of your explanations as you would have liked. Remember that I do not have the training that you do, so some things you say might not immediately register with the same level of relevance that you have been trained to be aware of. I never said that water optics is a perfect parallel. It's just an easily accessible example I could cite to explain what I was getting at. I really don't know how to specify the parameters of gravitational optics from inside a galaxy, but to entertain the logic of the OP, I just hypothesized that it was possible. The shape argument is the most convincing. Color is suspect because of the possibility of doppler-shift. By "galactic scale," I meant that there is a relatively dense array of stars/matter that create a certain "gravitational density" the way many molecules hang together as a gas-cloud or liquid. Instead of throwing a barage of unexplained reasons at me to overwhelm me with a preponderance of knowledge, you would be more successful by choosing a specific mass-estimation method and explaining how it triangulates mass by avoiding the assumption of Newton's inverse square law equation. That way, I could see that the inverse square law mass coincides with some other test, e.g. on involving luminocity - and how. Remember how falsification works because it's very convincing. If you give an example of a case that would falsify the method and show how the test fails, I would see how I was wrong. Right now, I can trust you that I'm wrong, but I can't really be reasonably convinced because you didn't explain it to that level of depth. If you don't have the patience to do that, it's fine. No one says you are required. But then don't expect me to trust what you are saying on faith either, just because you have a stack of textbooks on your shelf. I still don't see where these observations would fail to confirm the predictions if a less massive and more dense body of matter exerted more gravitation than a less dense body of the same mass. You would simply assume that the denser body had a greater mass if its gravitational behavior approximated that of a more voluminous body with the same mass, no? Based on theoretical methodology, no? Doesn't doppler-shifting of light waves correspond to compression/expansion of the waves that would also correspond to time dilation/compression? If 1000 waves expand slightly to occur over a longer distance, and the speed of the waves remains constant, the 1000 waves will take longer to pass as when they were compressed, right? But why shouldn't gamma rays and x-rays redshift to visible frequencies?
  18. lemur

    An Idea

    Gravitation decreases according to the inverse square law, which means it approaches zero but never actually reaches it. Personally, I see gravity and "spacetime fabric" as the same thing. As the universe expands, distance between particles/energy increases and as matter coalesces, relative vacuums form between the emerging/deepening gravity wells. Gravitation is the force that keeps the big bang from dissipating matter-energy completely without resistance, along with inertia. Thus, in my view, spacetime should be viewed in terms of the gravitational relations between objects, no matter how distant. Two galaxies may be loads of light-years apart but the spacetime growing between them is still defined by their being connected by gravity. I don't think that totally empty space(time) devoid of gravitation is possible, but maybe someone else would say otherwise, idk.
  19. I thought the logic was that there seems to be more gravitation present than observed matter to attribute that gravitation to. So "dark" refers to the fact that there's something causing gravitation that is not emitting or reflecting/re-emitting light. This was my impression anyway. I wonder if gravitation could tunnel through wormholes and cause otherwise distant masses to interact gravitationally in ways that wouldn't be apparent by viewing them from a distance.
  20. Couldn't you have said, "dementia" instead of "confused" to make it that much more confusing with the different meanings of the word, "dimensions?" I.e. "Confusing sci-fi dimensions with mathematic dimensions may lead to psychological dementia, which may be yet another dimension, though an undesirable one."
  21. You seem to have shifted from discussion-of-topic mode to ego-defense mode. If you want measurable evidence that this is true, count the number of times you used "I," "my," etc. and how you've taken a "who's-right?" attitude toward me, claiming that I am now challenging "80 years of astrophysics" etc. I think what you fail to understand is that orthodoxy is not the best or only approach to exploring knowledge. You seem to have grown irritated with discussion so you've decided to promote orthodoxy, basically telling me to go get the degree you did so I will accept that you are right about everything you say and stop exploring these concepts critically. Sorry, but you could be Moses coming down the mountain with video footage of a talking burning bush and I would still ask you what the ethical logic in the ten commandments is. I just like knowing why and how, not just what and who says so. Why is it that when you're looking underwater, you don't consider it implausible that objects appear to be different sizes and distances than you would expect if you were viewing them in the air? If a wave is amplifying and distorting the image of one rock and the trough of the wave makes the rock next to it seem smaller and farther away, you don't question how the water so "finely tunes" the distortions it causes. I honestly don't know whether the Milky Way could distort light that is reaching it's edges from outside, but I just don't see it as implausible considering how common optical distortion is in water and basically any other substance where light can pass through relatively transparently while being subject to intensified electromagnetic (and on the galactic scale) gravitation. Just answer one simple question for me. Could gravitation at the galactic scale have similar optical effects as electromagnetism has at the level of water or other transparent substances? Calm down. You don't have to establish the dominance of GR and absolute faith in possible alternative explanations to explore them. The OP just postulated something they wanted to discuss, so I thought why not actually entertain the hypothesis instead of burying it under piles of orthodox reasoning that contradicts it. I have no doubt that you can do math. What I questioned was whether you could recognize when the results you derive from math are an artifact of assumptions inherently built into the formulas and equations. I asked twice whether there was any way to measure the mass of a star or planet except by looking at its gravitation, but got no response. I asked if the measurement of mass was based on the assumptions built into Newton's inverse square law that only takes into account the distance between bodies and you failed to comment. Are you avoiding touching that question for a reason? Why isn't the light curve affected by doppler shifting? Or is it and you can just tell from the shape of the curve that it is a shifted variation of another curve? I'm glad you have experience with these things because they address questions I've thought about informally, such as why people always seem to apply doppler shifting to visible light, but I never read anyone talk about gamma-rays or x-rays redshifting to the visible spectrum, for example. Well, I really haven't proposed any universal theory of "how the universe works." But to answer your question, I think you would have to start by considering all possible optical effects of gravitation as light passes through a galaxy's worth of matter. The best I can do is to repeat my earlier question about comparing optical effects of water molecules to that of galactic matter. I did think about all these things, but I thought that the sun's behavior would influence such occurrences. There you go acting like I'm trying to overthrow a regime and you are the great-defender of that regime. All this is is a forum discussion. Stop inflating it to an epic battle between orthodoxy and infidels.
  22. lemur

    An Idea

    How do you determine the "edge of a planet's gravitation reach?"
  23. Some of us who lost funding/jobs long ago because we studied practically unfunded disciplines are not expecting to be showered with funding any time soon. The problem for us becomes how to sustainably participate in economic self-maintenance without losing one's basic academic/research interests and a sense of importance. Non-academic culture has a bad habit of dismissing issues that aren't directly relevant to the goal of making money or solving immediate technical problems. It is therefore tough to avoid conforming to this view and maintaining a sense of relevance for academic-type thought and research.
  24. So the possibility of logical paradoxes proves the impossibility of an omniscient being? Is that logical? If knowing the truth value of a paradox is impossible, then wouldn't knowing that be included as part of omniscience?
  25. Update: the spider is no longer there. There was/is another spider a few feet away on the same eave. I wish I had seen what happened to the spider. I would assume a wasp got caught in the web and stung the spider in an attempt to resist being processed. I'm disappointed because I would have liked to see the spider consume the whole nest of wasps so the wasps would be gone:( Maybe the second spider will fare better.
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