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Social Evolution, Revolutionary Change, Negotiated Settlement: What is Best When?

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I address this to my blog mates when I say that I did not have any idea how to get cleanly out of a topic that Padmini says she can achieve a PhD with when I brought it up.  Then, last night, while walking, I hit on this analogy ...
Cultural change through time is like responses in the flow of a fluid, like gravity drawing the water down the mountain over varied terrain, rushing, pooling, raging, all the time feeding life or drowning it in turn.  Cultural flow can be laminar, a term meaning smooth flowing without disruption or interference.  Or, it can just as easily be turbulent, tossed with with events colliding, people upset and fearful.
Social evolution happens even as the river flows in a laminar manner, for even though the water is seeing little mix, it must follow the river's ever changing course.  This is a time of peace and gradual development, a period of restful rejuvenation, a time of little fear or concern.  It is the time to bask in the purifying sunlight, for health t…

Globalizations versus Tribal Nationalism

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Honestly!  The way we behave, you'd think the earth was shaped like a cube, just a whole collection of flat earths.  Our country rules this face.  Stay away from the edge!
We have technology that has made far away places not, in practice, all that far.  We communicate around the globe instantaneously (for all practical purposes) and travel before the pandemic broke out made it fairly easy to reach any place on the planet you needed to be.  But that pandemic has demonstrated so many weak points, putting pressure on all corners (pardon the theme pun) of the globe.  The countries that work cooperatively have a beautiful advantage of shared intellectual resource and supplies whereas those countries like Trumpian America go it alone, substituting propaganda for progress.
The World Health Organization is made up of people.  That means it has faults here and there and has made mistakes.  However, it has served America and the rest of the world in a multitude of ways over the decades, even …

Application of AI in Agriculture

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The above pictures are from the World Plowing Championships on the South Island of New Zealand in April, 2010.  A most gracious host who was the owner of South Pacific Seed housed us and took us to see this.  But, let me fill you in on what you see above and what significance it has to me.
I grew up in the Heartland of America, the center of Kansas.  Our calendar and indeed much of our culture was centered on agriculture and the seasons.  Many of our families had farm land even if we didn't personally farm it, so we grew up learning acreage, the meaning of river bottom land, crop yields, wheat weight, etc.  I personally was not a farm kid, but even I have plowed fields with a tractor and have been a worker getting wheat from the fields into a grain elevator.  So, knowing this, our host thought I might be interested to see the actual World Championships of Plowing, something I didn't even know existed.
There were different competitive classes, classes of tractor and plow implemen…

Confusion

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I really don't feel confused.  I was attracted to science from an early age, reading Willy Ley books on how the moon landing would go in the future and Golden Books on the planets of the Solar System before the end of my third grade year.  I began college as a Physics Major and became a science teacher in the public schools on undergraduate graduation.  I studied Social Psychology in graduate school and completed a second degree in Computer Science.  I worked for over 35 years as a programmer slicing, dicing and analyzing data.  So ... the situation with Covid-19 and with the social upheaval of our times in America I don't find confusing, for it all has logical connections and is actually predictable as more data is gathered and analysis is done.  It only requires patience and study as information is developed as is always the path with science.
Unfortunately, not all my mates in America follow a similar path, for this is an age of political forces being applied against scienti…

Are People Intelligent or Stupid in this Pandemic Situation

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The people above are workers at the Mootown Creamery near Cleveland and this is some of the text that accompanied it on Facebook:
I've been trying not to say anything, but it is getting out of control.  STOP!!  Stop yelling at these young girls.  Stop slamming doors. Stop swearing at them and making a scene.  STOP!! These girls are wearing masks for your protection.  They are required by the state to wear them, and they do so with a smile because they care about you and your safety.
The rest of the world is aware of this phenomenon in some places in America I am sure.  The people taking the hostile attitude are not really libertarians or conservatives as much as they are Trumpists!  This is the stupidity at times of the Trump base.  Why on Earth would you possibly object to someone trying to make sure you do not get disease in the middle of a global pandemic?  Why, because your leader doesn't wear a mask, wants to see his audiences at rallies not wearing masks.  It is very macho…

Names and Nicknames

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Conrad is not a common name in my culture, although quite common in my ancestral land.  Indeed, it has been handed down through many generations in my family since 1737 in Hameln, Germany.  My great-great grandfather went by Conrad even though it, like me, was not his first name, and he was the Hake to emigrate to America in 1854.  Most recently, before me, the name was given to my father's brother killed in a bombing raid over Germany in World War II.  Giving it to me, as the first born of my generation, actually caused jealous anger to some in my family, for it was the name most valued to hand down.  Oh, well, first come, first served, I guess.
Interestingly, none of us appeared to have Conrad (or Konrad as it was spelled in Germany) as our first name, yet the is what each of us have been called.  My first name is Joseph, named after my father whose legal name was not Joseph but actually Joe, and specifically named Joseph so I would not be a junior.  And, in answer to the literat…

The Benefits and Limits of the Law and Order Approach

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Joe: What's on the schedule today? Ben: Why, today you have some brain surgery.  We laid out the instruments. Joe: Isn't that hammer a bit big? Ben: When you've been at this as long as I have, you'll realize that some of these people have thick skulls.  Believe me, this is the only thing that will work.
Now, I'm a believer in brain surgery when it is necessary, but I don't want it done with a two-pound sledge and a rusty chisel.  I can kind of predict what the outcome is going to be and something tells me it will be a bit painful getting there!  And, thus it is with law enforcement.  I believe in law enforcement.  I know some people have thick skulls.  But, I also know that there are more advanced, better tools and understandings than what I've shown above.
A hammer is a great tool.  Smaller ones than what you see above are excellent for nailing pieces of wood together.  As big or bigger than what you see above can reshape metal or dislodge structural members sc…