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Iraq PM rejects unity government

Iraq PM rejects unity government | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it
Iraq's Prime Minister Nouri Maliki rejects calls for a government of national unity to help counter the offensive by jihadist-led Sunni rebels.
Eli Levine's insight:

We should be working to undermine and eliminate this man and his government from Iraq.  Not only is this a stupid way to fight a sectarian-based war and win a country, but it's also crippling to all of our interests if ISIS gets more democratically fueled legitimacy in the areas they control in Iraq and Syria.

 

This is just going to fuel extremists and make it harder for al-Malaki to govern.  It's time that the US appeal to the Iraqi people to get rid of this man en masse and install someone who will support a unity government.  That, or remind al-Malaki that he'll be dealing with a hostile jihadi state on what will be a new border in the region.

 

Idiot.

 

Complete and utter, f*cktard.

 

And that's an insult to f*cktards.

 

Think about it.

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IB History Notes - 2.2 China under Deng Xiaoping, economic policies and the Four Modernizations

IB History notes on 2.2 China under Deng Xiaoping, economic policies and the Four Modernizations
Eli Levine's insight:

An interesting and pragmatic guide that needs to be adopted to each society's situation.

 

The collaboration and focus on what works and what doesn't work, rather than on ideological principles is what attracts me to these principles.  Allowing people to have some modicum of extra based on how much they're able to produce?  Also good, provided that some of it past a certain point, gets kicked down to workers.  A more conscientious attitude towards the environment would also be helpful.

 

A very interesting case to look at, for sure.

 

Think about it.

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The Genius of Deng Xiaoping

The genius of Deng Xiaoping, was that he was able to grow what would become a thriving economy from the ashes of the Chinese Revolution, the Cultural Revolution, and Mao's cult of personality.  He not only out maneuvered the old guard of the revolution, but also was practical and frugal enough to not waste energy, efforts, and resources growing ideologically based nonsense.  He kept control of the country's capital through the central bank, and enabled a modicum of personal profit making to encourage party leaders and business people to grow and develop.

 

All that needs to be done in China, is to have the excess profits that are accumulating in those no-name accounts to be kicked down to workers, according to how the economy grows.  It may also be a good idea for their next leader to welcome some more individual freedoms of expression after the wages have been increased according to the profits realized.

 

What Deng proved is that you don't need the international monetary system of capital to grow a powerful economy.  If you collaborate with your workers, enable people to get ahead personally (to a reasoned degree), and listen to what works rather than impose what you think would work, great things can grow from your society.  All that is left is stewardship of the environment and society, and a constant, proactive, and dedicated effort to understand what is there, how things are shaping up, what is changing, and how to approach that change such that everyone wins (meaning, the least amount of actual harm is done in a society to individuals).

 

The minority, no matter how powerful they may think they are, is ultimately bound to the will of the majority.  It is far better (and less messy) to sacrifice ones' own marginal position for the sake of the common well being and to ride out the benefits that they receive from what is an honest sacrifice.

 

Not all who lose something are losers.  Not everything that you lose is worth having to begin with.

 

Think about it.

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Deng's Pragmatism

Deng's Pragmatism | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

Deng Xiaoping probably has one of the best models of intra-national economic development I've personally seen.  Yes, he cracked down on all those students in Tiananmen Square.  But his dialogue with the local levels of social organization, the incentivization of growth for local businesses and Party cadres, and the insurance that most capital ended up in the state controlled central bank, where it could be reinvested into business ventures at the public's profit not only worked, but it worked very well within the context of Chinese political and social culture.

 

At the root of Deng's success, I think, is an ideological commitment to pragmatism and practical action to improve the lot of the public through demonstrated best practices derived from a controlled competition over what works and what doesn't work.  People who had winning models win out and are replicated and scaled appropriately up, while those who failed to turn a profit were let go from loans and investment.

 

In China, all that is needed now, is for the government of China to check the greed that is in excess of what the rich need to be wealthy, such that all people can be wealthy and happy.  Deng said that a few would get rich quick, with everyone else catching up afterward.  The few have gotten rich, but the rest have been effectively left behind, as the wealth becomes stagnant and constantly accumulated in the upper echelons of society.  It may be getting to be that time that the Communist Party of China make an effective transition to Market Socialism, where everyone can participate in the economy and have the time and wealth to do so.  After all, there is only so much wealth that one can have before they're unable to spend it within their lifetimes.

 

As for America, we have the freedom to compete for working models.  However, we do not have a necessary check on what is effectively personal or corporate excess, and we need to strengthen our regulatory oversight for quality control of the products that we produce.  We also need to economically penalize companies who move their factory labor out of our country, rather than rewarding them. 

 

In the end, we need to transition to a system that focuses on human well being, health, and quality of life rather than on the amount of financial profit that an individual can earn through self-destructive behaviors.  Those who would take a marginal gain in profit over having clean drinking water should be considered mentally ill and treated as the dangers to self and dangers to others that they are.  Money is important to ensuring quality of life.  Being wealthy enables many health benefits that poorer people don't have.  Yet what is the point of having so much that you're never going to use, while so many who work are denied that quality of life that they earn through labor?  Why do we favor the few over the many?  For what purpose?

 

Think about it.

 

Because this may be a, if not the, transition to Socialism that Marx predicted.  By Socialism, I mean a social-ism, as opposed to the anti-social-ism that we presently have in place.

 

All thanks to a few people's anti-social or delusional brains.  Nothing more.

 

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A Methodology for Research

You must look at each society, community, and their associated economy separately before you can begin to map how each part horizontally and vertically relates to the others.  Each society's social institutions will be different and that will produce different economies within the context of the global system, where they will all integrate in order to form a self-organized economic ecosystem that connects to the well being of a given society and to the well being of the environment and government. 

 

It is helpful, at this stage, to do research into the atoms of the global economic system; the domestic economies and social institutions of each society and country.  However, in order to truly understand the whole, you must zoom out from the atoms to appreciate the molecules and how they're put together and interact with one another, to form the economy. 

 

It's a 4-D thing, in that it works through time and all dimensions of what we'd know of as physical space.  The local levels feed the regions, regions feed the nations, nations also feed regions of nations, and regions and nations form the global world economy, which then goes back in reverse to touch the localities.

 

The equations of micro-economics and Neoclassical economics are bunk, along with their basic principles.  The basic principle logic of business, the entirely for marginal profit mantra, is also bunk to the production of a healthy economy, a healthy business, and healthy people.  It is the delusional individual who would destroy their home and society for the sake of cloth rag.  It is time that we, as a society, ceased accepting those levels of greed, and turned instead to focusing on how to live life, survive, and be well as a species.

 

Think about it.

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How to Leverage Economic Growth for the Public Gain

How to Leverage Economic Growth for the Public Gain | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

The trick to leveraging economic incentives is to let new companies have a few years of net growth (after their initial investments have been paid off) before you leverage any kind of taxation upon the profits.  If their profit streams get larger, you can tax them more, but only so much as to enable them to keep growing.  This way, human nature is allowed to continue to function, vis a vis, greed, yet the public is able to receive its share of the profit (for all the services that governments provides).  No harm is done to the businesses, and society is enabled to flourish.

 

The beauty of intelligent, effective, and empirically grounded governance that serves the public is that the funds don't go to waste without having significant kick back against the government.  In order to have economic growth, you've got to let the true entrepreneurs have the fruits of their labor while not allowing them so much of it that they kill themselves through social, economic, and/or environmental collapse.  It's a balance that has to be reached, and the results, if they're accurate, are more grounded in reason and fact than any of the Libertarian or conservative arguments bemoaning incorrectly perceived arbitrariness of the government.  They may govern the world capriciously, without reason or looking at the social and economic world that they're working on, like a doctor who doesn't bother to do a diagnosis of the patient before operating on them.  But that's not the way that a self-sustaining government works.  It's objective is to always do what's actually best for the patient; the society as a whole.  That requires checking under the hood to see what's actually wrong and how to actually take of it.   Libertarians, conservatives, and ideologues, don't do that, which is what makes them unfit to be in government at the legislative and executive levels.

 

And so, we see here how we can harness entrepreneurial drive to work for the public's good.  You need to let them get rich on their new idea and/or concept.  But, once they are rich, they need to be brought back to Earth, as it were, such that they don't go over the edge into the land of lunacy and wealth that they can't and won't use.

 

Think about it.

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The Value of Economic Liberty

The Value of Economic Liberty | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

Economic liberty, as defined by the ability to earn more than enough to cover your subsistence needs but less than becoming a millionaire or billionaire, is the only universally applicable form of liberty, and is one of the key root forms of liberty for producing a happy, health, and well off society.  Social liberties are all dependent upon the culture and the social environment in which they take root.  They depend on how a society conceives and perceives the liberty (such as freedom of speech or assembly or religion) and then how they execute them in their societies such that it makes sense and is beneficial for their people.

 

But once people have the ability to support themselves and provide for at least most of their wants, their abilities to tangibly live their lives increases several fold, as they don't have to scramble in or beneath poverty for mere subsistence, if subsistence is even possible.  Peace of mind and body can settle in, and people can shape their own lives with the material resources that they have, for better and for worse as well.  The denial of economic liberty to the masses is perhaps the greatest crime against humanity, besides the destruction of our environments and ecosystems for the sake of what are marginal profits for the big business executives and their investors.  They fear death by the mob and yet do nothing significant or substantial to do nothing to make sure that that doesn't happen, through allowing our government to function for the masses, socially and environmentally, and through enabling economic liberty for the masses through increases in pay and benefits to reflect actual productivity. 

 

Now, this doesn't mean that everyone magically becomes independent with economic liberty.  We're all going to still be economically and socially dependent upon one another's actions, just as we've always been throughout time and space.  The millionaires and billionaires always depend and have depended on the sweat and labor of the masses in order to produce their fortunes; no independence or "do it yourself" there.  We're also going to be dependent upon the environment and its condition for our well being and survival, which then trumps economic wealth as defined by having more than you need to subsist.  But the basic principle of enabling as many people as possible to participate in the economy while balancing out incentives for innovation and leadership remains the way to grow an economy and, more importantly, ensure the well being of the whole society (including for the rich who receive less extreme paydays, because the society isn't constantly in agro against them).  The individual companies can do this by giving better compensation packages to their average employees independently on a constant and consistent basis, or they can simply allow the government to determine fair profit sharing legislation that balances a company's need to grow with the economic and social need to appropriately compensate workers for the work that they do.  This is before we get into the prioritization of environmental well being, which is also a necessity for the rich people living in society as well.

 

Amazing that none of these apparently inbred elites have gotten the message from history or nature.

 

Idiots....

 

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A Young Man's Advice to an Old Society

A Young Man's Advice to an Old Society | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

India, you may never really get rid of the caste system.

 

Many of your greatest and most notable figures have advocated for the elimination of the castes, from Buddha (whom you now venerate as an incarnation of Vishnu) to Mohandas Gandhi.  Yet, here we are, in the 21st century, with the caste system in place on a defacto level, and it slowly beginning to creep back into the official, public realm.

 

It seems to be how you are; how you self-organize (and, indeed, it's how many other societies organize on a defacto level).  However, imagine how much nicer it will be if, rather than changing the institutions, you change your attitude with regards to those institutions and your relative places in them.

 

Brahmins: is it fitting of a Brahmin, one who are said to have the most amount of compassion and wisdom, to be disdainful, ignorant, and callous to the suffering and conditions of the dalits and other lower castes?  Isn't it nicer to be nice to other people, regardless of caste?  What is causing you all to collectively not see how your lives and well being are intimately connected to and dependent upon the well being, health, and quality of life of all those who are beneath you in social status?  Who else will carry your corpse to the funerary pyre, to unleash you into the bliss of what will, hopefully, be another Brahmin birth?  Correct me if I'm wrong, but, in Hinduism, being good to all others impartially is the essence of developing good karma for your present and future lives?  Wouldn't it be better to get to know, understand, and effectively help those who are less fortunate than yourselves?  Wouldn't that added level of social cohesion make your lives happier, more meaningful, and spiritually productive?  Is that not the grand lesson that gets repeated by all incarnations of Vishnu?  Why are the priests not listening or are too caught up in their own egos to understand or to wish to understand, the plight of the lower castes?

 

There's a reason why I have a tattoo of a Celtic tree of life on my back.  It symbolizes a functional society, where the inevitably present elite bend down to listen, understand, and help the lower roots of the society, which in turn, causes the lower roots to bend up and support those upper branches.  The tree's leaves provide energy for the roots that seek out nutrients, and the nutrients support the leaves and their production.  When conditions are right, and the tree is happy and healthy, it reproduces and spreads its influence further into the universe, repeating the successful model again, and again, and again, throughout time and space.  Yes, there is evolution.  Yes, there are adaptations.  Yes, things will not always be the same, that's just how things work.  Things change in the cosmological and planetary environment, and so too much the tree of society.  But the essence of this mutual reciprocity?  I think that that's something that is permanent in this universe, at the very least; repeatable across the board, and apart of the winning design that nature has produced.  If a system is going to be self sustaining, it must have some feedback to keep everything in balance.  The wolf cannot eat all of the deer, without causing their populations to dwindle, and the deer cannot become too plentiful, else they'll eat too many plants and spoil the forest.  Parasitism only will get you so far in nature.  And that, my dear friends, is precisely where we are.

 

Think about it.

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Show of force raises Iraq tensions

Show of force raises Iraq tensions | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it
Thousands of Shia militia loyal to powerful cleric Moqtada al-Sadr parade in Baghdad, raising sectarian tensions amid fighting in northern Iraq.
Eli Levine's insight:

Unfortunately, this article is not specific about with whom the tensions were raised.  The lead implies it's against the Sunni, but if you read the article deeper it's about al-Malaki.  Gotta be careful about the BBC, as it reflects Western interests and Western desires.

 

Interestingly enough, this did not seem to ping on Al-Jazeera.

 

Quite honestly, I wish either al-Sadr or al-Malaki would unifying message for Iraq and act on it.  Al-Malaki may be too far gone, with too much baggage to be accepted as a legitimate leader of Iraqi society.  This leaves al-Sadr to strike the unity between Sunni and Shi'a.  Quite honestly, at this point, I'm not sure he has the will, desire, or awareness to make that happen, if he can make that happen in the first place.

 

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Does Culture Matter for Economic Growth?

Does Culture Matter for Economic Growth? | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it
There's been an increasing number of papers concerned with culture and its relationship to economic growth. I happened to just see this working paper by Di Tella and MacCulloch (2014), but the idea...
Eli Levine's insight:

Culture is one of the roots from which economies grow, along with available resources, and technology.  It shapes not only how resources get allocated and how much work gets done, but also what kinds of businesses grow up, how they're run, and a host of other factors that contribute to the development of an economy.

 

It shapes the definitions of each society's needs, wants, wishes, hopes, and abilities/willingness to work towards those need, wants, wishes, and hopes.  It also helps create the architecture, ethic, and logic of governments, which then influences and shapes what kind of society and economy is produced.

 

Most definitely, a field worth looking deeper into, without mathematical equations (especially linear equations), preferably.

 

Think about it.

 

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Learning Favours the Brave

Learning Favours the Brave | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

The challenges we are facing today see to be coming faster at us, more complex to decipher and then re-evaluate how we should respond. To achieve faster response we certainly need to educate the organization more than ever.


Via Kenneth Mikkelsen, Paul Hobcraft, Mark E. Deschaine, PhD
Eli Levine's insight:

And, thus, conservatism becomes even LESS favored as a governing ideology and leadership trait.

 

Society is always on the move and our knowledge of the world is in constant flux.  It's like a treadmill that never stops and may change pace at a moment's notice.  If you keep doing the same thing or if you just try to stop, you're going to trip, fall flat on your face, and potentially take the whole of society with you.

 

The brain type of a conservative, regardless of which political party they may affiliate with, is unfit for leadership and was unfit for leadership in any century or millennium.  They push the same buttons, over and over and over again, without any learning, any observation of the consequences of their actions, and without any adaptation for when the function of those buttons change.  It is a ridiculous brain type, truly, no matter how functional or put together they may be individually and collectively.  And they're going to get us all killed if we allow them to remain in positions of power, consequence, and authority.

 

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The Supreme Path

Eli Levine's insight:

Read each piece in succession.

 

A most astounding work for anyone.

 

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A Path to Success in Iraq

A Path to Success in Iraq | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

In Iraq, we need to weed out, separate and allow ISIS to alienate itself from the general public of the Sunni population of Iraq.  The only way to do this is to provide them with an alternative to the highly unpopular Nouri al-Malaki, who has governed Iraq under strict sectarian lines, rather than as a unified society of peoples banded together by some possibly drunk British diplomat's lines in the early 20th century and a common history of existence together.

 

I do not believe that ISIS will be a healthy alternative for Iraqi society.  I think that their rigorous religious and ideological devotion will drive their people to possible rebellion against them, if given enough time and liberty to do as they're inclined to do.  The may be adapting tactics as we speak to make themselves more appealing than Nouri al-Malaki.  But remember, that if the Sunni had an alternative to Nouri al-Malaki in Baghdad, they may be more willing to switch sides and join with a moderate and reasonable unity government.

 

Extremists and conservatives may get the burst of support in the short term when societies are perturbed.  However, just as the Ayatollahs and conservatives are facing push back in Iran, so too will the conservatives of Iraq face their push back in time.  The key to fighting them is to provide psychologically and physically better alternatives who actually follow through on the appropriate courses of action for the general public and to otherwise leave the society to govern itself according to its own logic.

 

Therefore, I would hope that the US advises al-Malaki to hold elections and resign from power as a gesture of support for the country (which may not actually remain a country, given the historic relations of the societies who were bunched together in that territory by said drunk British diplomat in London.  There is a chance to save Iraq as is.  But it will require the sacrifice of its current leader and attitude towards leadership, neither of which seems actually feasible to play out in reality.

 

Shame.

 

But oh well.

 

Think about it.

Eli Levine's insight:

We go to war again.

 

Hopefully for better reasons and better effects.

 

Think about it.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UpO1VV9or2c

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Human vs. Natural Law

Human vs. Natural Law | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

The beauty of human-made laws is that they can be changed, altered, or removed for our own sake and benefit as a society.  Natural laws may not be so easily or readily removed, and may in fact cause considerable damage to ourselves if we ever figure out how to remove or alter them.  Cause and effect is always going to be there.  We should be mindful of both when making decisions in both our individual and collective social lives.

 

For example, a tax designed to go after the marginal returns on high profits that result from the diminution of quality has effects that are unknown on the economic system as a whole (think of the now 5oz can of tuna versus the old 8oz can of tuna).  The return on investment would still be high, just not as high as it would have been if the diminution of quality had taken place.  As such, it would be an experimental tax, first done on a small scale targeting a few of the older and more established industries in several localities.  If it has no significant impact other than to discourage eroding the quality of the goods, it can be implemented full scale.  If not, it can be removed or altered in order to produce the best results that are possible in the society through the economy.

 

The only ethic or ideology that suits a government's own function and well being is altruistic love for the society and the people and environment that you oversee.  It needs resources to do this and the resources should be collected through non-intrusive and damaging manners to either individuals or to organizations.  No other framework, other than the scientific perspective on how things are and how things actually work or can work, has any business being in government or government offices for their own sake and benefit.  They are significantly less likely to come up with positive, effective, and socially beneficial solutions to societal and environmental problems.  They would take revenue blindly, without any regard for how it effects the economic system, or else, not take any revenue and prevent the government from delivering effective and necessary services to the public.  They would also not design effective plans and services for the public's well being, owing to their lack of knowledge and care to have knowledge about their social and environmental worlds, and likely create all sorts of unnecessary (and unwanted) chaos in the social and environmental worlds for the sake of their truly sub-optimal and self-destructive ideological framework and perspective/conception of reality.  To not actually or effectively care for the society that you're working for is an effective death sentence for your government and elite institutions and networks in the long term (which becomes the short term), either literally, through removal from office and society, or through the spoilage of your memory in the minds of people.  It is ultimately cheaper and better for you, as a leader, to just govern for the sake of your public and to do the job as intended than to attempt to go off on your own tangent or opinion trail and stifle the complaints that will happen along the way.

 

This much history has shown.  Again, natural laws, cannot be changed without having potentially severe and negative consequences for ourselves, if we're able to change them at all.  Human-made laws, absolutely changeable.  The basic premise seems to be applicable in every society, even if the definition and goals of good governance varies from society to society.  Love, care, and a reliance on truth and facts, are most likely, I think, the things that will see a society and a government through until the end of the universe (or until things change faster than we're able to adapt to them for survival).  The essence remains the same although the scientific method is technically the only method that will effectively see society and government through the issues and problems that they will each and all face.

 

Just remember: human laws, no matter how attached or religiously significant we can make them, can always be changed for our own benefit, while changing natural law runs the risk of doing significant damage to our own selves, if it's actually possible to do so.

 

Think about it.

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The Path to Heaven; The Path to Hell

The Path to Heaven; The Path to Hell | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

It's not just the money in politics that's problematic to our society.  It's also the caliber of the people we send to office, the substance of their actions while in office, that's eroding our society and our polity from the inside out.

 

You need good people, with good intentions, good wisdom, good messaging, and solid, substantial action from the people who wield authority, responsibility, and control in our society.  Also, you need the negative in order to remind people how good things are under the an existing governing faction.  But that negative should never again return or hold power in a society without having a challenge to that negativity waiting in the wings to remove it from office again, and again, and again, until society is able to automatically recognize the negative and keep it out and recognize the positive and let it in.

 

Small selfishness, incorrect perceptions of reality and conceptions of the self, and ideological commitments based on nothing but faith are poison for governments and people who sit in governments.  Pragmatism, care, benevolence for the whole, and a solid comprehension of how the smaller self fits into the whole of the society and the environment is what is good for governments and governing members alike.

 

A pity we can't or won't see that in our country of incorrect perceptions of reality, self, and the world that is around us.

 

Think about it.

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The Decreasing Returns of Wealth

The Decreasing Returns of Wealth | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

Perhaps Deng Xiaoping's greatest weakness, is his misprioritization or misunderstanding of wealth.  Being rich is not, in and of itself, a path to being well.  Sometimes, being rich actually contradicts and ruins your ability to be well, if you become rich at the expense of the environment or the whole human society in which you live.  A better goal is to be well, not rich; healthy on the physical and psychological levels, not wealthy.

 

If only I had 5 bucks for every rich person I know who is not happy, not fulfilled, and downright miserable.  There is only so much wealth that one or a family needs in order to be well.  What then is the point of going way over that limit at the expense of your more human needs?

 

Think about it.

Because the environment, our society, and our individual lives are at stake and, quite frankly, I value those three things more than I value the amount of monetary or material wealth that I'm accumulating.

What's the excuse of the businesspeople and bankers?

 

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Beware of unregulated dietary supplements – Consumer Reports News

Beware of unregulated dietary supplements – Consumer Reports News | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it
No, Amoxilina is not the antibiotic amoxicillin. It’s a dietary supplement marketed mainly to Hispanics. Last week, the Food and Drug Administration said that four children in Texas were hospitalized after parents mistakenly gave the supplement to their children. While...
Eli Levine's insight:

You know.  There's a reason why and how we have a government to oversee our economy, our businesses, and our society.  If the laissez-faire market system worked in favor of everyone, this would self-correct instantly and no one would be harmed in the process of sorting things out.  This is clearly not the case, which prompts the need for government to effectively and transparently oversee our food, water, medicine, supplements, and anything else that the business world tries to get us to buy.  I'm not calling for price regulation or any other aspects of centralized market planning.  I'm calling for standards of safety and honesty, such that the consumer can make an honest and informed decision about what to buy and what to buy.

 

Sadly, the industry is excellent at the two things that really matter: false advertising and Congressional lobbying.  This is evident by the last time the FDA tried to regulate dietary supplements in the late 1980's and early 1990's and how they're responding to the incidents with Dr. Oz (who is probably sponsored by the industry anyway).  This leaves the public demanding that government "stay out" of dealing with parasites who are allowing people to die and then effectively buying up political influence in Washington to prevent things from changing anyway.  Americans are in an abusive relationship with our Capitalist overlords and ladies.  It shows when we collectively resist policy and personnel changes that may actually help us in the long and short term, physically and psychologically, for the sake of an incorrect perception and the machinations of the private industries who take control over our world.  It's sad, pathetic, and ultimately the fault of Americans' own stupidity and misperception of the world that is around them and trying to get them to choose a better path for their own sakes and benefits.

 

We're not so much the land of the free and the home of the brave, but the land of the too stupid to form a solid and accurate view of the world in which we're living, and the land of the too scared to take that extra step away from the corporatists and Capitalists who currently rape, abuse, pillage, and destroy their own world for the sake of their own marginal "profit".  Oversight of industries and institutions that are, according to their own unchanging logic, destroy themselves, their societies, and their environments, is not a bad thing for anyone, including for the industry's members.  It's just money, after all, and it's money that you're not spending and will not be able to spend on top of that. 

 

Americans have consigned themselves to the fate that they're going to receive at the hands of the Capitalists, industry leaders, executives, investors, and sham politicians.  I will always be present to help, when and if they allow me to.  But this abuse is the fault of the abused, because if the abused were to take an effective stand against the abuser and leave the abusers in the dust, things would be different. 

 

"Did you exchange, a walk on part in a war, for a lead role in a cage?" -Pink Floyd, "Wish You Were Here".

 

Sad.

 

Think about it.

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This map shows which export makes your country the most money

This map shows which export makes your country the most money | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it
Australia makes the most money from coal. Who knew?

 

Using data from the CIA Factbook, we labeled every country in the world by its highest valued export, a.k.a. the commodity that makes the country the most money in the global market. Click on any of the maps below to see an enlarged version. 


Via Aykut Kibritçioğlu
Eli Levine's insight:

Very cool and interesting.

 

Think about it.

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The Perennial Problem People in Our Society

The Perennial Problem People in Our Society | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

You're an ideological fool, or worse, a shameless money grubber, if you think that government ought to be laissez-faire about the well being of society and the nature of the economy.  I for one enjoy having some order, predictability, and standards when it comes to my doctors, lawyers, accountants, engineers, and other certified positions and professionals, because it's better to ensure they're competent first than to let the market "work" its way out, to the tune of lives, assets, and liberties lost by shams and hacks.  Are there going to continue to be people getting into positions they're not really inclined for?  Absolutely.  However, not only does government limit and actually minimize the effects of these hucksters from getting into places they really shouldn't be, it also gives us legal recourse to go after them when they do do harm onto other people, such that we can do more than pound sand or go after them with violent methods.

 

I also like that government can improve standards of living in a society by enabling people to take on educational opportunities and trainings and to get preventative and post-incident medical care when they need to at cost, rather than have to finagle with an unaccountable and for profit insurance company.  I also like that government can maintain and support public works that the denizens of the free market investment club would not take on owing to the lack of return on investment that they expect for everything that they do.  I also like the public services that WE pay for, such that we can live in a safer, more organized, more sustainable, and better quality world than we would otherwise be in if we were to go "laissez-faire".

 

There are many things that government cannot do in a given society.  It cannot force a people to be anything other than who and what they are, and they have to obey the physics of economies, societies, and environments in order to improve and maintain the quality of life for its citizens.  This being said, you are an unimaginative ideologue if you see nothing for government to do in our social and environmental worlds, when there is so much poverty, anger, ill will, and bad health being generated by its current set of laissez-faire and pro-business profit policies that it is pursuing.  All of these services come at a cost from the society; there is no truly free lunch here.  If the rich have a problem with being taxed so much relative to the rest of society, perhaps they should shift some of their income down to their workers so that we all can share more equitably in the burden of paying for that which we ALL depend on for our well being?  Perhaps they should put profit in its respective place relative to health and well being, and view positive returns on investment past a few years as a luxury that can be used for greater social and personal good than sitting around in some account, collecting low-return interest on low-risk and unproductive investments?  What good is a profit if it fails to provide value to the whole of society?

 

Idiots, money-grubbers, and ideologues.

 

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the perennial problems that help increase our misery in this world through insisting on being apart of the government in places of consequence, authority, and responsibility.  Until they stop running, we decide to not elect them, or until we label them as the mentally ill and self-harming people that they are, we will never be able to truly realize our potential in this world.  We'll just muddle on with their bs added to the normal bs that humanity and the universe dishes out to us.

 

Think about it.

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What ISIL’s English-language propaganda tells us about its goals | Al Jazeera America

What ISIL’s English-language propaganda tells us about its goals | Al Jazeera America | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it
Group’s growing English-language propaganda seeks a more global audience, and reveals its more lofty ambitions
Eli Levine's insight:

This is and was my worst fear.

 

They're aiming to out govern al-Malaki, and to provide an alternative to his seemingly ineffective, inefficient, and sectarian-based government.

 

If they were REALLY clever, they would be open to Shi'a and Kurds as well, and treat them kindly on a permanent basis as they march into their territory.

 

What this means is that we're not going to be able to dislodge them militarily or covertly.  ISIS could end up being the democratic choice of the public of Iraq, and that would mean that any act of aggression against it will be seen by the society as an act of aggression towards its own self.  The only thing we would be able to do is wait for ISIS to corrupt itself or cross social lines to make them illegitimate in the eyes of the public.  Only then could we make a move against them on their home turf.

 

This is why it's so important that we protect our own homeland as much as we can.  We can't chase terrorists down world-wide and we sometimes give rise to them through our meddling in other peoples' affairs to "protect" ourselves.  It is better to protect one's own house and to see to its internal affairs, than it is to go into other peoples' houses to meddle, connive, and contrive.  That doesn't mean that we should be passive or ignorant about world affairs.  It just means that we need to be a Hell of a lot more RESPECTFUL and COMPREHENDING of other peoples' cultures, tastes, and sensibilities in their own light.

 

We can justify action against ISIS for now, as protecting our country from the possibility of attack from a jihadi state.  However, we may need to ditch al-Malaki and throw our support behind whomever will be a more unifying character for Iraq.  This could mean al-Sadr.  This could mean anyone with enough street cred and respect amongst all Iraqis to unify a force against ISIS.  However, this may also mean that we're going to have to talk (not negotiate) with ISIS and to establish a dialogue with them, if they're going to be a player in the region's future.  Hopefully their conservative and autocratic ways will alienate the public away from them.  Until that time, we've got to be cognizant of how much support they actually have at any given time, and to wait for the winds to change in our favor.

 

Power corrupts.  Absolute power corrupts absolutely.  That's the kind of stuff that they're going to be wielding.  And that's how they're going to alienate themselves from the larger social public.

 

Think about it.

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The Future of Organization - YouTube

Aiming to eliminate the compromises in organizational life. Covering some interesting and provocative ideas, spanning human rights, complexity science, the d...
Eli Levine's insight:

Sometimes I wonder if I'm on the right track or not intuitively and in my own way, or whether I'm completely off course with how things actually are working in reality.

 

In government, I see it as a very simple process of finding out where the problems are in society and working with all members of society to resolve the problems.  I see it as a collaborative process where there is mostly listening to what is needed with a critical, but open ear, and then following through on those needs using empirically based and tested techniques to resolve the problems.  It's trying to understand how economies work, and how the global economy works, rather than how businesses work, and how it all relates and connects to the environment in which we all have to live, on the localized through global levels.

 

I don't know how to MAKE the organization of the government work better, other than to let it work naturally and then intervene when it is needed to improve function and the quality of results.  This then improves the chances of legislators and executives getting elected, and then, for administrators, improves the chances that they a) do a good job, b) leave a solid legacy behind and c) maintain the ability to keep their job and improve their career.

 

I'm going to take criticism with a critical ear, because sometimes people have good advice to offer, and sometimes, people are just incorrect and spouting off at you.

 

What do you think?

 

Think about it.

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Inappropriate Inaction

One has to really wonder about the rich in this world.  They bellyache, whine, and worry about being overthrown or killed by the people they have shown very little sympathy, empathy, or care for these past odd several millenniums, and then do nothing significant to remedy the situation.  It's as if they're waiting for their nannies to make things better for them; to wipe their a*ses and tell them that it'll all be "ok". 

 

People have expressed their grievances very clearly to the rich over these past recent decades and years.  They're unhappy that economic opportunity is lacking, in spite of record high profits and executive compensation packages, that the government that the rich have paid for is not acting on behalf of the wishes and needs of the public, and that the environment is being neglected and destroyed for the sake of these executives' and investors' profits.  You'd think a common sense investment would be to give some of the net profits back to the workers who produced it, steward the environment that we ALL depend on, and allow the government to respond effectively for peoples' needs.

 

But NO!

 

They can't or won't handle even THAT proposal.  Thus, the rich create a self-fulfilling prophecy in which they die for the sake of marginal financial gains that they cannot use in business propositions that the probably shouldn't be making in the first place.

 

Where's the disconnect that prevents them from taking these common sense steps to freeing themselves up from the burden of an untimely death?  Is money REALLY that valuable to them?

 

Honestly.....

 

Think about it.

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Southern Culture

Southern Culture | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

The thing about the South in the Civil War, was that they were fighting for the RIGHT to have SLAVERY as a social institution.  SLA-VER-Y, based purely on ethnic and racial lines, not LI-BER-TY, based on inclusiveness.

 

Now, the Southern "culture" is about promoting a new kind of SLA-VER-Y, wherein people are not compensated for the work that they do that builds on the wealth of society.  They RESTRICT our DE-MO=CRAT-IC institutions to make it be so, and then PLUNDER the EN-VI-RO-MENT, in which we ALL have to make a living.  It doesn't matter where the historic lines were or who's involved in it now.  The present state of our economy and environment is a product of the Southern strain of American culture; unresponsive, unadaptive, and callous towards the actual state of well being of the social and environmental order in which they find themselves.  This is a SOUTHERN problem, even when it is present in the Northern states. 

 

I for one, am SICK of this ANTI-SOCIAL, UNDE-MO-CRAT-IC, and CARE-LESS culture pervading OUR government, OUR society, and ruining our ACUTAL state of PHYSICAL and PSYCHOLOGICAL well being.  It's just laziness, inefficiency, and carelessness all around.

 

And people STILL will buy into it!

 

Let them take their own country.  Let them show to the world what happens when the SOUTH, regardless of state lines, is allowed to self-organize without the help from the NORTHERN culture of inclusiveness, respect, efficiency, and care about the world beyond a myopic vision of one's own self.  At this point, I don't care if they all die due to poor social management.  It'll just be less baggage for us to carry around in the long term, should they so choose to remain unresponsive and unadaptive to the changing situation that is around them, not to mention, indifferent to the suffering of the people around them.

 

There's no excuse for it anymore.  You're either a callous bigot, who won't accept facts and information from the world around you, or you're a human being, who embraces the hard truths of the world around you, and makes changes according to that for your own sake at the very least, for everyone's sake at the very most.

 

And to think we may have to fight a war to keep these ignoramuses from spoiling our world.

 

Think about it.

Eli Levine's insight:

To my Southern friends, here is your choice:

 

Adapt, or risk killing everyone and everything that you value.

 

Think about it.

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Carnegie Mellon Student Gives a Lift to Lessig's Ideas

Carnegie Mellon Student Gives a Lift to Lessig's Ideas | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it
Lawrence Lessig is one of the most astute systems thinkers on the planet. Carnegie Mellon student Jordan Harrison decided to help bring Lessig's ideas alive visually, with this video.

Via Coffee Party USA
Eli Levine's insight:

No duh!

 

And yet the ideologues and conservatives see nothing wrong with it and actively encourage it!

 

Worth spreading.

 

Idiots....

 

Think about it!

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Monica S Mcfeeters's curator insight, June 26, 2014 12:33 AM
I agree with the idea that Lessig is one the most astute systems thinkers on the planet. Take a minute to look over the visualizations created by student, Jordan Harrison of Lessig's ideas.
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What I Would Teach

What I Would Teach | It Comes Undone-Think About It | Scoop.it

The common problems in societies are conservatives and ideologues.  Not only do they lack the compassion and empathy needed to effectively govern a society and act within the larger world around them, but they also lack the sense and the willingness to explore problems with their beliefs and propositions.  This then means that they produce sub-optimal policy, which then leads to sub-optimal results within the given society that they're wielding influence in.

 

If I could have one wish with regards to politics and governance, it would be to perpetually and sustainably eliminate the influence, power, and control of conservatives and ideologues in a society.  I would teach people to recognize good governance and good governors/legislators/statespeople for their actions, not their words, and to draw causal links between certain behaviors, policies, and actions and the benefits that they yield for the public.  I would teach the public how the mechanics of societies work and what to expect from a governing body based on the public's expressed needs, desires, and interests.

 

At the very least, I would teach the people who would want to govern and administer the world how to act in their own self interests by adapting to changing conditions, new knowledge, and demands made by the public, rather than overriding these concerns and issues for some opinion that they may have about this, that, and the other thing.  It's fine to have hypotheses when we lack the awareness, know-how and knowledge.  Just ground them in reality and don't be too upset if they get proven to be wrong.

 

Honestly, how hard are those concepts?

 

Think about it.

Eli Levine's insight:

May all beings be happy.

 

And may I lead them into a position where they can better achieve that happiness.

 

Think about it.

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