Stock Trader Speaking Truth About the Coming Economic Collapse

Independent trader Alessio Rastani shocked BBC news anchors and the whole financial community on Monday (Sept 26/11) by speaking the truth about the looming economic crash in Europe and eventually around the world. The video below went “viral” within 24 hours and already has over 2 million views.

Particularly interesting was Rastani’s statement that “governments don’t rule the world, Goldman Sachs does.” I’m still amazed at his candor considering he makes his living within the system he is so brutally exposing.


Martin Luther King Jr Speaks Zeitgeist

"Zeitgeist is the general cultural, intellectual, ethical, spiritual, and/or political climate within a nation or even specific groups, along with the general ambiance, morals, sociocultural direction, and mood associated with an era."

Courtesy of TheFifthGreatApe.


Evan Thompson on Life and Mind

Evan Thompson is professor of philosophy at the University of Toronto and a leading researcher in theories of "enactivism" and embodied cognition. Thompson has written extensively on cognitive science, phenomenology, and the philosophy of mind. He is the co-author of the groundbreaking work The Embodied Mind: Cognitive Science and Human Experience (1991), and his most recent book, Mind in Life: Biology, Phenomenology, and the Sciences of Mind (2007) is a brilliant update on his version of the embodied mind thesis.


Protevi on Embodiment, Enaction and Deleuze

I'm rebooted this post in order to present each of the eSMCs talks on their own. Below is a stimulating presentation by Lousiana State University philosopher John Protevi delivered at the eSMCs Summer School seminar "The Future of the Embodied Mind" in San Sebastián, Spain, September 5th-9th, 2011. Enjoy. [ h/t New APPS ]
Deleuze’s contribution to an enactive approach to biology
by John Protevi

Abstract: I will preface my presentation with a brief outline of the three-fold ontology of the French philosopher Gilles Deleuze (1925-1995). Deleuze’s formula is that (1) intensive morphogenetic processes follow the structures inherent in (2) virtual differential multiplicities to produce (3) actual localized and individuated substances with extensive properties and differenciated qualities. Simply put, the actualization of the virtual, that is, the production of the actual things of the world, proceeds by way of intensive processes. Various authors have shown how this scheme provides an ontology for dynamic systems theory.

I will then suggest three ways in which this schema can provide a conceptual framework for an enactive approach to biology, keeping in mind at all times the tradeoff between the effort necessary for learning a new vocabulary and new ontological scheme versus the benefits of adopting that new framework. My model here is the work of Hubert Dreyfus in making the vocabulary and ontological scheme of Martin Heidegger relevant for cognitive science.

First, I will discuss Deleuze’s notion of a “larval subject” accompanying “spatio-temporal dynamisms” (= intensive morphogenetic processes) in relation to the sense-making of autonomous systems, as laid out in Thompson’s synthesis of Varela’s notion of autopoiesis and Di Paolo’s notion of adaptivity.

Second, I will discuss Deleuze’s notion of “counter-effectuation” (roughly speaking the feedback from actual and intensive to the virtual) in relation to Mary Jane West-Eberhard’s notion of environmentally induced phenotypic variation (= “developmental plasticity”) as the leader in evolution.

Finally, I will discuss two notions associated with Developmental Systems Theory in Deleuzean terms: a) the heterogenous nature of the developmental system (intra- and extra-somatic elements) in terms of Deleuze’s notion of “assemblage” and b) the notion of niche-construction in terms of Deleuze’s notion of “territorialization.”
 from eSMCs on Vimeo.

you can find related videos & resources: here


Embodied Minds and Thinking Bodies

Cognition at the crossroads: 
from embodied minds to thinking bodies
by Michael Wheeler

 from eSMCs on Vimeo.

you can find related videos & resources: here

Welcome to Climate Reality Now

Happening Right Now:

24 Presenters. 24 Time Zones. 13 Languages. 1 Message. 24 Hours of Reality is a worldwide event to broadcast the reality of the climate crisis. It will consist of a new multimedia presentation created by Al Gore and delivered once per hour for 24 hours, representing every time zone around the globe. Each hour people living with the reality of climate change will connect the dots between recent extreme weather events — including floods, droughts and storms — and the manmade pollution that is changing our climate. We will offer a round-the-clock, round-the-globe snapshot of the climate crisis in real time. The deniers may have millions of dollars to spend, but we have a powerful advantage. We have reality.

24 Hours of Reality will be broadcast live online from September 14 to 15, over 24 hours, representing 24 time zones and 13 languages. Watch the Live Stream below:



Talisman Energy Funding Climate Science Denial at the University of Calgary

From the Ottawa Citizen:
A major Alberta-based oil and gas company helped to kick-start an elaborate public relations project designed to cast doubt on scientific evidence linking human activity to global warming with a $175,000 donation in 2004 channelled through the University of Calgary, a newly-released letter has revealed.

The donation from Talisman Energy was the largest single contribution to a pair of trust accounts at the university that received $507,975 in donations to produce a video and engage in public relations, advertising and lobbying activities against the Kyoto Protocol and government measures to restrict fossil fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.
Read More: Here

Some context from Wikipedia:
The August 2007 Newsweek cover story "The Truth About Denial" reported that "this well-coordinated, well-funded campaign by contrarian scientists, free-market think tanks, and industry has created a paralyzing fog of doubt around climate change." "As soon as the scientific community began to come together on the science of climate change, the pushback began," according to University of California, San Diego historian Naomi Oreskes. The article went on to say that individual companies and industry associations—representing petroleum, steel, autos and utilities, among others—formed lobbying groups to enlist greenhouse doubters to "reposition global warming as theory rather than fact," and to sow doubt about climate research just as cigarette makers had about smoking research.


The Democracy of Objects

Just returned home to find out Levi Bryant's Democracy of Objects is now available online for free. For those of you who don't know, Bryant is a philosopher and Lacanian psychoanalyst at Colin College whose work focuses on object-oriented ontology and social theory. His popular blog Larval Subjects is an inspiring example of a public intellectual applying his trade in a open, accessible and endlessly thought-provoking manner. Do yourself a favor: read, consider and buy his book.


The Buddha

Watch the full episode. See more The Buddha.

[ h/t Leon - After Nature ]


Tom Sparrow on Sensation and the Elements

I’m still waiting for an acquaintance to unlock the secret chambers of my former CPU’s operating system to gain access to my documents (including forthcoming posts on Integral Ecology), but at least I’m getting around to a lot of desired reading while I wait.

Currently I’m enjoying a few amazing essays by Tom Sparrow. Sparrow is a philosopher currently teaching at Slippery Rock University. And I couldn't be more excited about his forthcoming book, Plastic Bodies: Rebuilding Sensation After Phenomenology. He blogs at Plastic Bodies.

Below is an extraordinary passage from Tom’s essay, “Bodies in Transit: The Plastic Subject of Alphonso Lingis”, where he is riffing off some core ideas in Lingis's work - talking up elementary life and sensuality as a fundamental mode:
“The elements that give life to each one of us by offering themselves as the very stuff of our existence are sensuous material—luminosity, tactility, and sonority bathe our sensitive bodies. As the real source of our nourishment, they lend us sensibility and illuminate our world. Through the elements, the affective quality of sensuality—the unbearable or ethereal modes of bare life—is able to condition our “spontaneity.” No one can spontaneously wrest their psyche from a depressive state or truly induce a rapturous joy within themselves without the influence of some external power. Sensibility is not formal in its pure state, as Kant thinks. It does not come from inside and project itself outward; it does not derive from some transcendent location, over and beyond the sensuous manifold. The perceived sensuous manifold is always immersed within a sensuality which generates a creature whose sensibility emerges with its ripening.” – Tom Sparrow, p.113
I’m enthralled by Tom’s developing aesthetic/metaphysic and intend to follow is project intensely. I have also discussed his work previously here and here.

Cross-fertilize Tom’s words with those of Lingis on “the elements” below:
“Life lives on sensation; the elements are a nourishing medium…The light is not just transparency which the gaze slips through on its way to distant surfaces; our gaze delights in the vivacity of the light itself. It assimilates in its languor the soft depths of the dark. The sonority is not just a succession of sense data which the hearing identifies as signals and information-bits; the ears are contented with the resonance of realm beyond realm as with a content. The touch lets go of things to relish the terrestrial and solar warmth. The earth extends its indefinite expanses before the steps of the nomad who is not scouting for any retreat, moved by his appetite for open roads and uncharted deserts. Erotic sensuality is not a hunger…It surges in a vitality that lacks nothing, is fed and sheltered and contended, a vitality that greets the earth, the skies, the day and the night with the ardor of kisses and caresses.” [Alphonso Lingis]
[ Lingis quote courtesy of Adam Robbert of Knowledge Ecology – a blog any thinking primate needs to follow ]

Debunking the "Ethical Oil" Myth

Author and activist Naomi Klein debunks 'Ethical Oil' at the Tar Sands Action.
Klein was arrested at the White House with a delegation from the Indigenous Environmental Network on Friday, Sept. 2, 2011, during the two weeks of sit-ins to halt the tar sands pipeline. They were among 1,252 people arrested:


Unintended Consequences

Every new invention changes the world -- in ways both intentional and unexpected. Below historian Edward Tenner tells stories that illustrate the under-appreciated gap between our ability to innovate and our ability to foresee the consequences.

Edward Tenner is an independent writer, speaker, and editor analyzing the cultural aspects of technological change.


“everything is affective”

Below is Steven Shaviro riffing on affect and politics – taken from Adrian Ivakhiv's recent post updating us on the symposium exploring Shaviro’s book Post-Cinematic Affect:
“For we do not live in a world in which the forces of affective vitality are battling against the blandness and exhaustion of capitalist commodification. Rather, we live in a world in which everything is affective. What politics is more virulently affective and vital than that of the American Tea Party? Where is intensive metamorphosis more at work than in the “hyper-chaos” (as Elie Ayache characterizes it, following Quentin Meillassoux) of the global financial markets? It is not a question of a fight between affect and its “waning” or exhaustion (whether the latter is conceived as the actual negation of the former, or just as its zero degree). Rather than being on one side of a battle, affect is the terrain itself: the very battlefield on which all conflicts are played out. All economic and aesthetic events today are necessarily aesthetic ones, both for good and for ill." [also see here]
Adrian has also commented extensively on Shaviro’s book in a previous and highly stimulating post entitled, "Post-Cinematic Affect in the Era of Plasticity". Hopefully we won’t have to wait too long for Adrian’s book exploring cinema, affect and ecology (Ecologies of the Moving Image). My brain drools just thinking about it.

UPDATE: From a physicist's viewpoint...
“From a physicist's viewpoint, though, biology, history, and economics can be viewed as dynamical systems. Each system consists of many individual parts that interact with each other. In economics there are many agents, such as consumers, producers, governments, thieves, and economists. These agents each make decisions optimizing their own idiosyncratic goals. The actions of one agent affect other agents. In biology, individual organisms - or from a more general perspective, individual species - interact with one another. The actions of one organism affect the survivability, or fitness, of others. If one species changes by mutation to improve its own fitness, other species in the ecology are also affected.”
Per Bak and Maya Paczuski, 1994
Related Posts with Thumbnails