Archive for the ‘poetry solves science’ Category

NASA self-poison of choice: As.

December 4, 2010

In an obviously overtly exaggerated and overtly misleading media show, NASA and some of its people hyperhyped the description of an arsenic loving bacteria fished from the bottom of a lake. How can you demand knowledge accountability-to undergrads for example, to MH for example, to Glenn Beck for example-and anybody for that matter if NASA behaves in this way? I have found that in the last years, water in the moon, water in Mars and “new planets” have been grossly inflated stories. NASA has been a failure here.

On the positive: Sharon Begley wrote a very decent review in Time magazine of the status of genetic knowledge of disease. 80 % of the studies are wrong or irreproducible? I will check, but wouldnt surprise me. Plenty is wrong with scientists and medical sciences’ approach to their contributions. Diabetes medicine, osteoporosis? annoying Sally Fields advocating unsubstantiated benefits for Boniva ( I havent seen the TV ads anymore)…still out in some magazines. One of Boniva side effects: locks your jaws…..

A la recherche du Temps perdu: ce ne pas posible.

August 31, 2010

The insanity of the blogosphere: an understatement, obviously. It is superinsanity. Some commentators have adressed the issue recently.  Why did we think the blogosphere-BP- would bring about a new enlightenment? It has cheapened truth, betrayed knowledge and disseminated plenty of vitriol, simply reflecting the insanity of the world. However the good side of it is that the “BP”  appears to be a ‘collective cathartict”, a frantic search for validation and recognition of ones’ existence. It could be argued that a significant % of bloggers would be out there inflicting pain to others, instead, they write. Harsh but possible. The theory is at one point youll tire out vomitig insults.

Insanity in the world: many dismiss Glenn Beck as a nuisance ; a nuisance  that gathers at least 67-87k people (according to AirPhotosLive? If Beck had more balls he would have called openly the “revolution” (no metaphor here) that he would want to lead. I noticed that the place wasnt packed-at all- as in MLK rally(thank the Lord). Compare images.  I hope GB runs for office-imagine-with SP-to see where we stand really. Palin I noticed is undergoing a Ms Hyde metamorphosis. Fortunately GB is not smart, I leave open the idea that he is astute-and a liar- (in a fox sense, no pun intended). For example; he retracted claiming Barack was a racist. But he already said it. So all his followers claim that BO is a racist. What if yesterday we would have witnessed the birth of a mormon ‘prophet”? People is desperate. So is GB. Everybody spreads runors: we live a rumor based society. Whistleblowers? (free agents acting on their own behalf).

The theme here is the reinvention-or rather recycling- of truth. Deception at its best. Deception that eludes even its creator, the deceiver. Everybody is lying, cheating, misquoting, no prisoners; lets all go to hell yelling, murdering, cheating.  Case in point: Marc Hauser, a well known “moral scientist”, has been caught ‘doctoring”(what an inane gerund) data. Interpreting monkey business; all his colleagues smirk. Why? . Sad, very sad. Many science blogs have mutated unto self support systems to denigrate and attack when the papers dont agree with your work or your “ideology”. Case in point; EO Wilson, M. Nowak and C. Tarnita published a paper in Nature, “The evolution of eusociality”  where kin selection is “discussed”. J. Coyne and others -Dawkins for example-have taken upon themselves to declare, stridently, the paper wrong, an ‘uncalled for” (sic) attack on natural selection and of course Darwinism. Ill take my evolution lessons from Nowak and Wilson anytime (as opposed to take an evolution course from say, Dawkins).

Which brings me to a comment that Franzen, the writer, made in a recent Times issue. Quoting Kierkegaard: “the state of constant distraction-busyness-that allows people to avoid reality and mantain self-deceptions. With the help of cell phones, e-mail, and hand held games. It is easier to stay busy in the Kierkegaard sense that it has ever been.” I would add fantasy football, …and, of course, blogging…” make no mistake: I acknowledge this as a condition of the times: a virtual zeitgeist that compounds the self and throws it unto a downwards spiral of trivial pursuits: like defend Darwin (??).

When we opened our eyes, did we know we were, and were here?? always and never

January 17, 2010

I’m asking those questions because  I’m considering “consciousness”-as the seat of humankind- but will take the poetic detour, which is convenient and by the way, “consciousness” still being a “mistery”-scientifically- it can be claimed beyond a reasonable doubt that poetry can solve-or dissolve- the science of consciousness and make the idea more amenable, or interesting. Nor that we have a Cultural neuroscience field of study, my days as my own private subjective self are numbered.

Lets start somewhere: Vicente Huidobro, a chilean poet, published, in 1916  “Adan“-spanish for Adam:-)”, (ADAN reads NADA in reverse: Nothing, what a bummer) where he pushes with  his “creationist’ agenda-made explicit in “Non serviam”, a manifesto where he proclaimed humans’ independence-at least the poet’s independence- from mother nature.  Adan is  in essence a dramatization of the book of Genesis as a-scientific-myth-according to Jose Quiroga from Georgetown, but it  has NOTHING to do with God , nor with ‘creationism” in its neodarwinian sense.  Huidobro places as a decisive turn in Creation the moment Adan wakes up  from his primeval dream. Before he wakes up there is nothing to consider.  As he wakes up, mother nature: outside from the start, becomes severed from inside: “self, conciousness”. Hence, existencial angst forever. An collectively we never went back.

“”……….Y en medio de los dos grandes silencios                            Between the two cosmic silences
……….de la tierra y el cielo,                                                                  of heavens and earth
……….eternamente cara a cara,                                                          face to face, eternally
……….Adán enorme y solo se elevaba                                             Raises Adan, enormous and alone
215…..mudo como una estatua,                                                         mute as a statue””

This,  is becoming conscious; we severe ourselves, trough consciousness from the outside, through a powerful independence movement: “Non serviam….you mother…. nature”. Mutely. It should be pointed out that it is suggested that language is not a precondition to be conscious (Cristoff & Tononi, among others have written extensively about the physical underpinnings). Which Im not sure if it will stand the test of further work: in my rationale it is hard to imagine consciousness as I experience it without language. It is interesting to consider that speech->language emerged from selves networking. When Adan emerges from the clay,  everything resolves unto itself, blessing him, later,  with the meaning of the words that quicken his independence from the landscape. No longer humans are part of it. When Eve wakes up he tells her. A very unpopular event with feminists.

Later I quoted;  “Original man, shouting his consonants, did so in yells of awe and anger at his tragic state, at his own self-awareness and at his own helplessness before the void…” Barnett Newman, 1947, The first man was an artist. The Tigers’ Eye. N.8. So, here we have the first H. sapiens waking up. And the convergence with Huidobros’ take is remarkable. It begs the question: could H.sapiens ancestors do the same manouver, that is, know they are and dont know where? I doubt it. Could H. habilis, erectus, heidelbergensis have sapiens consciousness? Probably not. The idea that self-awareness and consciousness are a quantum leap in human history, that is emerged with sapiens,  is appealing to me. I cant imagine a lower-in height, not in quality_ consciousness “level” asking and feeling the same way. Although there is some conflicting  reserch about this, it seems that you are conscious or not, which sounds kind of funky.