Tuesday, November 11, 2014

What's in the future?

What is in the future?

The short answer... I do not know.

Well what do you want to do?

Well nothing much, I have everything I need, and I am trying to let go of desires. Desires derive or arise in the primal part of the brain. These are modified or can arise in the unconscious as well. This is where they derive the strength from. Desire for the basics are primal. The drive for food, sex, security, survival, shelter, companionship, and more and more, greed, probably arose on before we became human and make us humans today.  

It is likely those that desired more, spent every waking hour figuring out how to get more, survived better. And now that we have excess, desire is the underlying characteristic of excess that is bringing down our population, obesity wise.  That is why I am trying to give up many desires.

The Amish recognized this problem and put a solution into practice. We have no community anymore, we have specific interest groups which form a part of society and provide our social needs. There solution will not work in a industrial population as we have today.

It needs to provide a solution in the here and now, based on reason and logic or science. Religions cannot provide this. Psychology seems to be a lost cause, they have not figured out how to deal with emotions yet. The only hope is philosophy, not modern philosophy but as the ancients practiced as a philosophy for life. They knew that desires were the root of the problem, as did Buddha, and the religions.

The solution that the ancients suggested was one of displacement. Just keep on doing something. Any thing that is not part of the problem. Just do it. Pick up a cause and work on it. The none food related parts of obesity, and yet these cannot be separated from the food part, for they work together, sort of.

ButwhatdoIknoweh?         

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Moral Values in Engineering

from  http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/philosophy-stirred-not-shaken/201410/declaring-moral-bankruptcy

"Moral bankruptcy: the state a person reaches when he trades away or violates too many of his core moral values and commitments. He may also lose important relationships either as a cause or consequence of his loss of moral commitments. Someone who is morally bankrupt may or may not recognize that he has reached this state. 
As someone working in moral philosophy, I argue that our deepest moral values and commitments are a crucial part of our self-identity. When a person knows his nonnegotiable moral commitments and the values he holds most dearly, he knows himself in a very important way. He knows his limits and his boundaries. He knows his motivations as well as how he tends to act in situations that require a moral response. "

The forgoing quote is what I felt engineering had become, and then there was the prostitution element. By prostitution I meaning the selling of opinions which matched the clients needs, not necessarily my true opinion. This removed all my passion for the available work. It was time to change when I realized I was morally suffering. That is when I took the step to set up my own company, to be able to choose what I would do and what I would not.

Self-identity is a big issue, but so is making a few bucks. I did not take on any prostitution type clients, however there were a number that requested a geotechnical investigation and did not use the results.  Oh well, shit happens. Most stopped being clients. There were those to who took the report and did whatever, and never called again. It is and was important to do right, regardless of what the client wanted. Clients always want more than there site can deliver. It was cheaper than the adjoining land because it was a swamp that had topsoil fill on it. You bought it without a geotechnical investigation, now you need to live with the cost of development, or sell it and chalk this all up to the cost of education. Doing a less than adequate job of development will reduce the value of the project down the line. If you want a structure that will be good only short term, perhaps you should use someone with more life before retirement. I do not have time to recover before retirement if I get sued for unprofessional conduct.  But then, what is professional? Gambling is not professional engineering, but professional gambling.

We engineers geotechnical typically know what will work, but there is a space between that and what we know will not work. Developers like to keep there cost low, and like to work in the unknown area between these two, but most are gone in two years when the problems start. The problems are for the new owners, the original owners have moved on. There are numerous problem buildings around. Lots of problem yards, parking lots and roadways which have issues. Oh well, I am retired. Most are not my designs that have issues. A few are, but none of these followed my designs. We geotechnicals do not have control over the actual construction. The owners/developers can build as they like, and not follow the plans.  Oh well, shit happens.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Radicalism

Definition Radicalism: the opinions and behavior of people who favor extreme change especially in government.

What brought about this post? Well it is the death of one Canadian serviceman at the hand of an Islam idiot by vehicular homicide. He intentionally ran over the person.

Radicalism is an strongly held opinion, like most of us think it is our duty to get up in the morning and go to work. We are slaves to the dollar or to the things the dollar can buy more likely. We work so that we may live in comfort with heat, eat well, have medicine when we are less than feeling tiptop, and so that we can reproduce. We work to provide all those niceties that we have and would like to have.

Now if we decide to become minimalists, and to live that way, would we be radical? Most certainly, but benign, like the Amish. And if we continue to work each day, over a lifetime, possibly, economically comfortable. One would likely start growing some food, and take the time to meditate or do something. One would also likely stop watching TV, and videos, and think more about what we really need, not about our stimulated wants, and that restraint would destroy the economy, or change it in unthinkable ways. Real leisure time, which was talked about at the start of the computer development could be a reality, but not likely. We work so that we can have. Greed, man, Greed for power, for control, for grandeur.   It is that short path to greed for power, control, and for everlasting life that makes radicalization possible. Everlasting life is a myth, propitiated by Christianity and Islam. When we die, we become a corpse, another dead animal. The fact that we can think, have consciousness, is irrelevant to death.

If we are strongly driven by some ideology, regardless of that ideology, we could be termed a radical. We may, at times, radicalize ourselves. We change our views and go on a diet, loose a bunch or weight. We have become a radical, we hype ourselves up for a period of time to do this extreme effort, and we achieve, for a while. That is the radical state. It is much easier when there is a group, where we can all motivate off each other, the mob effect. We like to follow, to act as a small group, the social animal that we are. We feel good thinking that the group is right, the remainder of the world is out to lunch. We need to show the world the reality, to wake then from their dream like walking state. We are the awake, the remainder of the world is sleepwalking through life. Tear down the government by becoming a minimalist. Bring the economy to a halt. Do so by living in comfort but not excess. Join the Stoic community where self-control, temperance, courage, judgement are our cardinal virtues, where all members are serene and calm because we live by virtue.

So much for radicalization.

 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Protocol

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/10/12/texas-health-care-worker-ebola/17147449/

"At some point there was a breach in protocol," Frieden said. "That breach in protocol resulted in this infection."

This sounds about like the diet situation.  'We know our plan is right, and if it did not work, you did it wrong.'

There is much fixation on the belief that the protocol is right and adequate, yet there is a failure. Typical government bureaucrat.

It is like those who take responsibility for all successes, but all failures are someone else fault. The local county councilor comes to mine.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

ISIL Canadian contingent

ISIL or ISIS needs to be stopped. Some of them are reported to be Canadian. These need to be stopped.

They were radicalized in Canada. How do I know? The Canadian ISIL's hopped on a plane and headed to the Middle East. OK so we pull their passport and try the survivors on return.

But they did not act alone. There are families, and others here, involved in radicalizing and raising little terrorists. Many more in numbers that the terrorists. What are we going to do about them?

The real problem is right here in Canada.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Golden Mean

Aristotle described the concept of the golden mean, as it translates. Basically it says that ever good characteristic has two opposites,and the ideal characteristic lies in the middle, hence mean value between the ends. Buddha said something similar as living the middle way.

We see the two opposites esteems in people like Howard Hughes and Mother Teresa. We see extremes in many people, and they are difficult to be around. The controller vs the uncaring. The honest and the corrupt. Having worked for both types, and some other weird characters, there is always concern for the future. There was the fellow who's business was struggling, and sold his leased cars to lease back company, and was paying two leases on the same cars. He stopped remitting payroll deductions, and medical plan deductions. He tried to pay the claims for a bit, but the economy caught up to him.

Then there was another fellow who would not repair nuclear density gauges and told us to guess at the moisture content of soils or the density. "We should know what it was anyway, close enough, but do not report anything stupid." Some of us went back to volume meters and stoves, where he realized it was cheaper to use that old equipment, and he bought up a bunch of cheep volume meters that were un-calibratible. That was the start of the fast decline of the working environment. 
 
In the linked article http://newstoa.info/article134.html they talk about dependence on others to the extreme. But there is another side, the self-sufficient to the point of failure. It causes much left undone, for I know enough to do it half-assed, but lack patience, skill, energy, motivation to do it well. It causes leads to excess self-sufficiency to the point of not needing other people much.  Such is the life of a know-it-all. Much more is of no interest to me, for I do not care. I remind myself of the classic definition of autism: difficulty communicating, socially awkward, and limited interests. So which came first?

So every true virtue is the golden mean between the two opposites, according to Aristotle. Here endeth the lessons.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

ID a radical 101

We can say that ISIS or ISIL are a sick bunch of perverts dredging, and each of them is responsible for their own lives, and there radical religion (belief system) must be rotten to the core, or at least barbaric. The government should not let any of those sick F's back into Canada. And what about the families they came from, and those that trained them?

So how do we ID a radical?

Well we can say they have no respect for our customs, it's rules, and laws. They disregard our laws, including traffic. They have a different philosophy, but then so do I. They live their sick philosophy. Does that help? Not likely.