Apparently, even privileged fucks from China can exploit inclusivity and diversity to shut people down. You know... hateful people like the Dalai fucking Lama.
Now I don't agree with the Lama or his ethos, but come on... he mostly talks about dealing with your own garbage and tending to yourself.
If you needed any more evidence that Social Justice is morally bankrupt exploitation of feeling over fact (and feeling over the exercise of individual judgment), there you have it. Calls for diversity and inclusivity, with rare exception, imply an abandonment of reason, which is the only bullshit detector you have.
Our relationship with our own faculties of reason come down to practice. It's use it or lose it. Either we call things as we see them or we're the next mark for whomever figures out how to push our buttons.
But, if our commitment to the truth is strong enough and we form convictions based on our long-term practice of clear thinking, we can be like the immovable stone in the river... the manipulations will flow around us like so much water.
We don't need to fix the world or anyone else's flawed notions. But we do need to look upon the world call bullshit when we see a steaming pile of it. We are at peak bullshit right now (or hopefully heading toward it). You've never needed your reason more.
There Are Four Lights!
I've only checked out the episodes of Rogan that friends have said I have to listen to except for this one, which I have listened to with no recommendation.
Rogan has proven himself to be a really smart and knowledgable host who can hang with nearly anyone, at their level. This one has an amalgam of philsophy, psychology, and mythology and it's pretty dense at times but it's a great discussion about the cancerous effects of Postmodernist philosophy and its war against clear thinking and elevation of feeling over fact.
Peterson has decided to take a vocal stand against recent legislation in Toronto in regards to gender pronouns and I first became aware of him from Sam Harris's podcast but this conversation flows a lot better than the ones between Harris and Peterson.
This is a 3-hour chat. It is profound and worth your time.
Integrity is looking at observable fact reality, measuring and isolating to determine cause-and-effect relationships, and discovering the principles to guide your actions.
Integrity is knowing in principle what is right for you as a human being in the fullest capacity of being human and acting on those principles when it is most tempting to choose otherwise.
Integrity is being open to revision of your principles, solely by you based on your integration of new data.
Integrity is putting the person you have chosen to be on the long term (i.e. what you think of yourself) before the feelings and reactions of any other person.
Integrity means that sometimes you will stand alone with no visible allies, but it also means that the people who do stand by you consistently stronger allies are aligned with your principles.
One does not make fast friends because of Integrity. It is something that is recognized slowly, even by the people who respect it.
Integrity in the social sphere is using the same set of criteria in measuring others as you measure yourself.
Integrity is not letting spite or rage or "the perfect comeback" choose your actions.
Integrity is not the number of people who agree with you or think that you're right.
Integrity is not letting yourself be "carried away" as part of a mob.
Integrity is not something that can be created by social pressure of any kind: not guilt, not shame, not fear. Though it can be tested with these pressures.
Integrity can never say "I couldn't help it...." or "It wasn't my fault...".
Photo Credit: Arches | Andrew Malone | Flickr
In response to a long-time work friend on the Bookface:
Venezuela is an interesting Ghost of Christmas Future for societies which do not make banishment of force against any individual (tautologically, the smallest minority you can create) its highest priority.
When, instead of protecting rights, government acts as the violator in the name of "equitable distribution of revenues", the government violations of individual rights will not likely stop at force against the rich and wealthy.
You are correct about the current president. He is a danger to us all. However, this may also have proven true of a President Bernie Sanders as well. That is the important idea to consider.
Neither the Democrats or the Republicans are principled about using force to protect rights rather than to violate them. Nor do they have clear principles about what is or is not a right. The will of the majority does not create natural laws.
Going back to your original thought... I will try to appreciate this day. It is easy for me to get there mentally because my parents left behind everything they owned to escape the Viet Cong and come here. And today I celebrate the life of my paternal grandfather. Much love.
You've done the hard work of making sure you don't throw the baby out with the bathwater: discarding sensible things associated with negative ones. Good!
Gotta also make sure you don't accept nonsense because it's hanging out with something sensible.
For example: kindness is a good state in which to be. But I've heard recently that political correctness is just another word for kindness/consideration from a person who was being rather unkind about it.
Well, with all due respect to reality, if it were merely kindness or consideration with no differentiating features, there wouldn't be a need for a separate term for it. You heard it here first, folks: Every new term entails some new differentiae from the genus. And if you don't think so, stop arguing for Gay Marriage and just accept "Civil Unions".
Different word? Different Concept.
Political correctness is an exploitation of an implicit moral gradient... one direction is uphill and the other benefits from gravity because we have, perhaps unknowingly, accepted some premise. It is usually meant to compel or prohibit certain behavior but the overarching goal is to make you doubt your own mind.
Self-doubt? Fuck that noise. We ain't got time for that.
I'm not saying we should go out of our way to be offensive. We're not Trampeteers or Alt-Right Supremacists. But we need to understand Political Correctness as what it is: Guerilla Warfare against the way your mind sees reality.
Well... Your mind is all that you have. And the extent to which you trust your mind is the extent to which you have self-esteem.
Don't smuggle in the bathwater with the baby. And don't let anyone else do that for you either.
Still relevant 2 years later!
- Step 1: person posts rage-driven engagement-inducing meme.
- Step 2: even more see that shit and feel either rage or self-righteousness
- Step 3: profit
Blog posts written by your own hand
- Step 1: Write something on your blog that can actually engage people in discussion without triggering them
- Step 2: Two people see it
Apparently Prince was the very first guest on Arsenio Hall when he came back to Late Night in 2014.
An amazing interview. People are rapt... listening so closely you could hear a pin drop in the gaps while Prince is speaking.
He talks about technology being a double edged sword and that artists don't always get paid. That is a malady of our age and people who love art and artists need to find it within themselves to make sure that they do not deprive artists of pay by their short sighted choices.
Social justice only happens when we treat people as individuals in accordance with their conduct.
However, most of what writers try to float as "social justice" is some variant of robbing people like Paul to pay people like Petra. The Pauls are given less than their conduct deserves out of some warped notion of tribal guilt.
That is not justice of any kind.
How many people have said to me that they think renting is throwing money away but owning goes toward somethiing. Many.
How many of these people consider whether working for someone else vs. starting and owning your own business is the same question. Very few.
The 30-year fixed mortgage is a staple of how people think about home financing but it is really grim when you take the long view.
I pulled today's rates from a local credit union and plugged them into some loan calculators built into Google Sheets. Did you know that the lifetime interest paid on a 30 year mortgage is more than 2.5 times what you would pay for a 15 year mortgage?
Now some of you are thinking: "good!" Mortgage interest is a darling tax dodge. It's a preferred way of paying the bank because it happens to be deductible on your taxes if you itemize.
Those of us who live unconventional lives and actively select which incentive systems we are willing to participate in may or may not be swayed by this. Yes, mortgage interest is preferred by the tax system, however, the math seems to indicate an increase so large that it completely outsizes your tax benefit in the long term.
Also, you're paying a bank... for borrowing money.
This is fine to do when you can rationally claim that it's in your own best self-interest. But bear in mind that they pay lobbyists that a lot of that money to ensure the legislators keep the system just the way it is.
Any incentive system can be thought of as a game. We need to pick the games that we play with care. They ways that they influence our decisions can become hidden from our sight, in the same way that we stop noticing the things that are familiar.
Remember This Always: Debt Grows Faster Than Savings
(...this is still true when the interest is preferred by the tax code.)
This answer comes by way of the Preservation Principles PDF from Newport, RI. Wikipedia has the following:
A muntin in US usage is a strip of wood or metal separating and holding panes of glass in a window.Muntins are also called "muntin bars", "glazing bars", or "sash bars". Muntins can be found in doors, windows and furniture, typically in western styles of architecture. Muntins divide a single window sash or casement into a grid system of small panes of glass, called "lights" or "lites".
I thought they were called "Mullions". But I find that many of the things I can look up today, which were not as easy to look up in years past have turned out to be wrong.
Muntins are often confused with "mullions" (which separate complete window units)
Photo Credit: Matěj Baťha - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0
People who make a lot of noise about social justice aren't very clear about what the end game is for all of their noisemaking.
They can't name it explicitly because, deep down, whether they know it or not, their end game is your guilt. And your guilt is their power.
They can win this only with your assent.
DON'T GIVE THEM A FUCKING INCH
Live your life the best you can playing the hand you were dealt. Live like your long-term happiness and well-being are your primary goal.
Sure... help others from time to time, but for your own reasons. Share your truth for your love of the truth. Share your knowledge for the love of knowledge. Share with people whom you enjoy because of their love of their own lives.
Never let sacrifice or guilt become your motive power. Never apologize for your priority of fact over feeling.
Ukulele Magazine recently featured an article written by Daniel Ward on practicing arpeggios slowly and another article expanding on it. I've incorporated meditative fingerpicking into my daily practice first thing to get focused on breathing and listening.
I have also adapted the practice for the key of G Major:
ARPEGGIO MEDITATION IN G MAJOR
Fingerpicking practice, breathing, and listening. Arranged by Francis Luong (Franco)
G Gmaj7 4/4 Gtr I ||--------2-------2-|-------2-------2-|-------2-------2-|-------2-------2-| ||o-----3-------3---|-----3-------3---|-----2-------2---|-----2-------2---| ||o---2-------2-----|---2-------2-----|---2-------2-----|---2-------2-----| ||--0-------0-------|-0-------0-------|-0-------0-------|-0-------0-------| Em7 Em6 |-------2-------2-|-------2-------2-|-------2-------2-|-------2-------2-| |-----0-------0---|-----0-------0---|-----0-------0---|-----0-------0---| |---2-------2-----|---2-------2-----|---1-------1-----|---1-------1-----| |-0-------0-------|-0-------0-------|-0-------0-------|-0-------0-------| Cmaj7 D7sus4 D7 |-------2-------2-|-------2-------2-|-------0-------0-|-------0-------0-| |-----0-------0---|-----0-------0---|-----3-------3---|-----2-------2---| |---0-------0-----|---0-------0-----|---0-------0-----|---0-------0-----| |-0-------0-------|-0-------0-------|-2-------2-------|-2-------2-------| G Cm |-------2-------2-|-------2-------2-|-------3-------3-|-------3-------3--|| |-----3-------3---|-----3-------3---|-----3-------3---|-----3-------3---o|| |---2-------2-----|---2-------2-----|---3-------3-----|---3-------3-----o|| |-0-------0-------|-0-------0-------|-0-------0-------|-0-------0--------||
The Good, the Bad, and PowerTab
I decided to try assembling a tab using powertab which is pretty old these days and hasn't been maintained. I don't suspect I'll continue using it. Print output has severe issues with title alignment on Windows 10.
My inelegant workaround is ASCII output, which permits me to adjust the text. I just don't think I have the patience to PDF, screenshot, and crop after using that dreadful interface.
Guitar straps ship with holes cut for a normal strap button. But if one of your strap buttons is also a 1/4" plug then you might want to enlarge the hole on that side of your strap.
You can buy a hollow leather punch set for very little money on Amazon. Based on some quick eye-balling I think about 3/8" is the right size.
Add a hammer and a plank of wood to put underneath the strap and you're ready for action.
I find that it works better to cut into the leather if I tilt the punch around rather than hammering it in squarely.
A person who claims victimhood often demands your empathy.
In the moment of demanding your empathy, they are extremely self-centered. Nothing matters more than their feelings.
Simultaneously, they demand of you that you put their feelings above your own reason and/or feelings.
It is a double-standard, and as such, means that the person's arguments whatever they are (and perhaps the person, entirely) deserve to be dismissed.
No one who betrays that they demand more of others than themselves deserves a hearing.
(Warning: Turn on the sarcasm filter.)
If I care about...
- (Group 1: the victim... please select one or more)
...then I have a license to belittle, harrass, and disrespect people who are...
- (Group 2: the privileged... please select one or more)
...and anyone who criticizes my arguments in favor of the same victims.
The Mentality of the Enforcer
"The privileged" (Group 2) have no ground on which to demand common decency unless they first pound their chests about how privileged they are.
Unless they understand the depths of their guilt, we will treat them in accordance with that guilt.
By treating "the privileged" badly, I am being kind. I am increasing net kindness in the world. And I am only being mean to people who deserve it. Their lack of inclusiveness as evident by their lack of making similar noises is all the evidence I need of their bigotry.
There is no live-and-let live with bigots. You can't ignore them. You have to shout them down and make civilized conversation impossible for them.
Only by making the right noises can they prove their innocence. Maybe then they can they be permitted to be heard.
You can tell a person isn't a bigot because they also shout down bigots. Support these people.
Anyone who disagrees is a bigot or is giving comfort to the status quo. They stand in the way of social progress. They need to be treated like bigots.
If I have identified a new type of victim that other people aren't including, I've changed the game and I'm a winner. I get to mistreat any people who don't acknowledge this unsung victim until they start making the right noises. I love this game!
In the end, the world is going to be such a kind and inclusive place!
I'm really making the world better!
Pooping rainbows and love out of my ass is amazing!
Ukulele Practice Everyday
Pretty sure I played ukulele every day in the last quarter. On the days I didn't feel well, I played for 30 minutes or so and then shut it down. On the really crazy days, I put in about 4 hours.
I can spend 20 minutes a day practicing a song that is only 2 minutes long and still not have mastery over it after a month. And so, I have a lot of respect for people who make it look easy.
I've been recording video of my practices. I was doing this selectively at first but found that I was too nervous about "getting it right" for video and it didn't feel natural. So I decided to purchase an external 4TB USB drive and now I am recording nearly every minute of my practice. I burned ~3.2GB of storage just yesterday. It's an extravagant use of storage, but totally worth it and storage is cheap.
I posted 3 videos to my Youtube channel and 9 videos to my Instagram profile. I've been embracing a mode of "Document, Don't Create" and it's a lot easier for me to just post something that has rough edges with that mindset.
The 50 songs project is going strong, albeit slowly. I now have a combined 43 songs on my "accepted" and "active" lists. The instrumental solo songs take a good bit longer to be able to play but are very rewarding. I have found that most of my energy goes toward this and I am fine with slowing down the project for this purpose. James Hill's site, The Ukulele Way has been the most important resource in my development during the last 90 days.
Also, I finished working my way through Harmony and Theory and I am now pursuing Ear Training during breakfast.
Q1 2017 presented a number of physical challenges for me. A shoulder injury sustained while practicing Jiu Jitsu has made me reluctant to do pull-ups since January and those were a staple of my workouts. So I've switched to resistance bands and I am doing my own rehab. I can now do half height (to 90 degrees) pull-ups without too much distress.
And, just a month ago, I found out just how bad it is to add miles really quickly. I ran so much I limped for a week. So I put myself on the injured list and I will not be running either of the races I listed on Franco Now: 2017 1Q. That being said, I did run with The Raven in Miami when I was there in January, so I had my fun. I am still proud of most of my training but I am looking forward to taking a break from running to heal up.
Time Enough for Heinlein
I read a LOT of Heinlein. Added many quotes to my Aphorisms page. I think I've just about had enough of him. So going to move on to other readings. Dune perhaps. And more Sanderson.
I have agreed to take on Scrum Master role for the team so I will have study up to understand how I can help the team to better organize and turn our hard lessons into new cultural practices.
And Other Things As Well
I hosted two WDS Local DC meetups. I do a roll-call in the days before each to ensure a quorum before proceeding. It works well enough.
I didn't do so well at contacting a friend each day but I feel like I did pretty well at keeping in touch with remote buddies. I averaged a phone call with a long-distance friend about once every 2 weeks and even managed to get some people on/before their birthdays.
I started the process for becoming a volunteer with the County. Going to try to focus on assisting Seniors with living during 2017. And I am hoping that I can incorporate ukulele into this.