Play-doh “dil-doh” is a sign of problems in the society

Play-doh “dil-doh” is a sign of problems in the society, not in the Play-doh manufacturer company.

The people that saw the plastic cake topping as a dildo should ask themselves why they see the world that perverted way. There are many objects around us that may be treated as phallic symbols, down to even every bottle standing upright. That’s not a good reason to actually cry bloody murder about them. Treat bottles as bottles and cake toppings as cake toppings, and everything will be fine. If you see phallic symbols in innocuous things – go see a doctor.… -->

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Another setback for space travel

The commercial space travel has experienced a second setback in a row. A few days ago Antares rocket that was carrying cargo to the International Space Station blew up. Now the Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo has exploded on a routine test flight, killing one pilot and seriously injuring another. Space odyssey may not be coming to our civilization any time soon. The society, mired in virtual reality of the Internet and fight for power, seems incapable of making progress it so boldly promised just thirty years ago.

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The Wolf of Wall Street – I wish for censorship

Suddenly got around to watching “The Wolf of Wall Street” a couple of days ago. This junk comes highly recommended and received both good reviews and viewers’ ratings. What a disappointment! I could not make myself to finish watching it.

Is this our new hero? A drug addict, with the motto “you can do whatever you want if you have enough money”? Spare me the story of the movie, I know. Movies serve to educate and lead us to the higher ideals. What are the ideals here? That bankers and brokers are really cool? That raking in money for doing a disservice to people is the new kind of Robin Hood chivalry? The movie is not just useless, it is poisonous to the society. This is the kind of movie that makes one wish for censorship.

I think “a glass of warm spit with a hair floating” is the best fitting description for this film. I am sorry I even watched the half I did.… -->

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Robert A. Heinlein, “Have Space Suit – Will Travel”

“Have Space Suit – Will Travel” is another wonderful book from one of my favorite authors, Robert Anson Heinlein. It is classified as science fiction, as, I think, all of his books are. There is science fiction in it all right. However, as it is usual for Heinlein, there is quite a bit of adventure and a serious amount of political and societal wisdom in the book. Adventure is thoroughly enjoyable and a couple of times takes completely unexpected turns. What piqued my attention though was the end of the book.

Nearly at the end, there is a court of sorts that judges whether Earth would present a danger to the survival and well-being of the existing system in the future. It is a “Security Council” of sorts, for the three participating galaxies.

“The facts have been integrated. By their own testimony, these are a savage and brutal people, given to all manner of atrocities. They eat each other, they starve each other, they kill each other. They have no art and only the most primitive of science, yet such is their violent nature that even with so little knowledge they are now energetically using it to exterminate each other, tribe against tribe. Their driving will is such that they may succeed. But if by some unlucky chance they fail, they will inevitably, in time, reach other stars. It is this possibility which must be calculated: how soon they will reach us, if they live, and what their potentialities will be then.”

The book is written in 1958 and the United Nations Security Council had its first meeting in 1946. Apparently, Heinlein saw quite clearly the danger of the organization: such an overarching organization of powerful nations is charged with keeping the world “stable” and may destroy other nations that threaten the status quo. Both organizations are charged with keeping the peace but the one in the book easily destroys whole planets and civilizations for the sake of safety. What does the one we know in our world do? What will it do in the future?

Anyway, even besides this obvious political twist to the story, the book is quite amazing. It has a very romantic story, in fact, without ever mentioning anything about love. It is rather about romantic friendship and I nearly forgot that the friendship can be romantic. It is so good that there are authors like Robert Heinlein to remind me.

“The best things in

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The Trap: What Happened to Our Dream of Freedom

I just watched the BBC Series The Trap: What Happened to Our Dream of Freedom from 2007. The three one-hour series present a very interesting insight into one of the facets of our society. The basic idea of the movie is to describe the origins of two ideologies of freedom that dominate the world: the positive and negative freedom. The positive freedom is based on an ideology, on an all-encompassing idea that drives people forward, like in Soviet times, for example, while the negative freedom basically justifies “everyone for himself” attitude, promoted by the “free market” ideologists. The interesting part is that the authors conclude that both ideologies cause societies to end up in the same place eventually and then the positive freedom society at least has some ideology while in the negative freedom society people lose all purpose in life.

An absolutely hilarious piece of news from the movie:

… the game theory/free market model is now undergoing interrogation by economists who suspect a more irrational model of behaviour is appropriate and useful. In fact, in formal experiments the only people who behaved exactly according to the mathematical models created by game theory are economists themselves, and psychopaths.

And so it is a very interesting series. Highly recommended.

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Social isolation?

I quite enjoy reading Zen Habits and recently came across a discussion of social isolation that happens to people who are not quite like everyone else.

Being different means some people don’t know what to talk to me about, because the normal topics don’t apply to me. It’s harder for them to relate.

Yes, I can certainly see how that may happen. We were talking with a friend the other day and he mentioned that other people find it difficult when he does not talk to them of sports and politics. They seem not to know what else they could converse about. And we, me and him, can roam the city together for the length of a whole day and never run out of subjects to discuss. And we never talk about football.

I do not like myself to talk trivial subjects like sports. I think sport is there to do it, not to talk about. So it is great if you play football and can tell me about your game, but if you only see it on television, why talk about it? I often have this difficulty with business people of all sorts. They would invite me to a dinner and then fall into an awkward silence when they find out I do not plan to have a meaningless conversation about baseball. And then it is like if they have nothing else to talk about! People feel themselves on unfamiliar ground, they are lost, they struggle to find a subject of conversation…

But behold – just ask a few questions to find out what really interests them, and the same people will liven your whole evening with tales of fishing in Thailand or going around the world in a kayak. Is it not far more interesting and enjoyable than a place-filling and time-wasting standard sports conversation? And if they do not have any interests beyond eating, drinking and watching sports on television, I do appreciate that they never call on me again.

Sometimes I just don’t feel like hanging out with people who are being unhealthy or going through life not caring about what they do or who just want to get drunk or stoned. I don’t think they’re bad people, but it’s not that fun for me.

Precisely. We do not want those people to waste the time of our lives. Let us have conversations that matter.… -->

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The U.S. battle against privacy in U.N.

The Cable reports in their exclusive about the battle being fought by America against on-line privacy in an obscure U.N. General Assembly committee that is looking to constraint the widespread surveillance of the Internet. The proposal by Germany and Brazil spearheads the mounting movement inside U.N. that seeks to uphold the Internet privacy as a basic human right. The Cable notes that “American representatives have made it clear that they won’t tolerate such checks on their global surveillance network.”… -->

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Twitter Quitter or twitterquitter?

Hey, I just came across a wonderful couple of definitions in the Urban Dictionary. They are both about Twitter and both about quitting and they rhyme same but they mean different things. I do not know about you but I caught some luls from this. Check it out: Twitter Quitter and twitterquitter. Eh, what am I? Both!!!

I was actually looking for Twitter Widower Support Group, I heard they give out t-shirts. That turns out to be just a rumour. Or do they exist and I simply could not find them?..… -->

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U.S. Child Exchange

Reuters published an investigative report on the practice of exchanging adopted children on the Internet in USA recently. The parents adopting foreign children in U.S. advertise the kids they did not like on the Internet boards, like Yahoo and Facebook, and find quickly new homes for them without ever verifying who the other people are. Many children change several families in a short time, get lots and lots of abuse and suffer humiliation.

Speaking publicly about her experience for the first time, one girl adopted from China and later sent to a second home said she was made to dig her own grave. Another re-homed child, a Russian girl, recounted how a boy in one house urinated on her after the two had sex; she was 13 at the time and was re-homed three times in six months.

I am happy to know that Russia forbid adoption to U.S. since last year.

More: Russia launches criminal inquiry into U.S. child exchanges… -->

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