September 4th, 2010

(no subject)

5 Mind Blowing Ways Your Memory Plays Tricks On You

Everybody will tell you that memory can't be trusted. When they say that, of course, what they mean is other people's memories can't be trusted. We don't like to think that everything we know about the world is based on a deeply flawed and illogical storage system.

While this list is obviously comedic, it's also true. Your brain is not 100% accurate and you don't remember everything exactly. This is why witnesses are unreliable in a court case, physical evidence is better; although the more witnesses you have that agree, the better the odds are that it's mostly accurate.

This is also why propaganda works, it's not just because people want to believe it. As long as it sounds plausible, doesn't contradict something they already know/believe, and comes from an assumed trusted source then it gets believed without much question. Even if you educate people to question everything, you're fighting against biology (not saying it's impossible, just difficult). And with image manipulation so easy now, it's even harder to know what you can trust when you weren't actually involved yourself.

On the other hand, there are always exceptions and genetic freaks and special people (just watch Stan Lee's Superhumans to see that), so it's always possible that you're the one oddball who isn't like this. Odds are against it though.

Tony Blair pelted with eggs at book signing in Dublin

Blair was the prime mover in the relative peace that exists in N Ireland he was also the wholehearted supporter of the invasion of Iraq, he lied to Parliament, has said sorry for all the deaths and struts about seeking approval of his book analysing himself for us just to show what a great guy he is.
History will decide, brilliant politician,great orator, manipulator,saint, murderer?

Perhaps the book signing in London will remove his halo.
  • ddstory

The Mexican cartoon controversy

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Now. There are two sides of the issue. OK, maybe more, but here are the main positions.

1) This is about freedom of speech. The cartoonist is an American citizen, and America respects freedom of speech. It's one of America's core values. Everyone is free to express their views, positions and convictions, and in this case the author expressed his concern that Mexico is gradually turning into a failed state due to the huge drug-related crime and violence. It affects his own country (America), and he felt he had to express his position. Painting a symbol as an allegory which would be clearly understood was supposed to send an eloquent message about his intentions, which were to protest against Mexico being turned into a shithole, and an area that constantly generates violence which could jump over borders and into the US. "Editorial cartoonists look for readily recognizable metaphors and that's an obvious one for Mexico," says Cagle.


2) It's an insult to the Mexican national symbols. Mexicans are proud people and they wouldn't tolerate a foreigner shitting on their symbols. It's too easy to mock other countries while turning a blind eye to the beam in your own eye, and forgetting to mention your own flaws. And these aren't few - the enormous drug industry originating in Mexico actually finds its end market exactly in the US. If there wasn't such a huge addiction to drugs in America and such an active demand for coca and other drugs north of the border, these narco barons wouldn't be as powerful as they are, having the millions of US dollars that they fill their pockets with after placing their crime-stimulating product on the US market.

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There could be many more points but I think these are some of the main ones which are circulating the discourse. So which of them do you (sort of) support and why?