Saturday, January 03, 2015

Chaos theory

Our political system in the United States is not set up for majority rule. It is a mistake to call us a democracy because we are a republic which has leaned heavily toward letting the minority have a powerful voice. An example is the recent election where I have heard Republican pundits say-- the American people have spoken and it means the Republican/TeaParty agenda is the one they now want.

Hold on just a minute. The majority of Americans did not vote to change anything. Small states, who don't have to have as many votes, get two Senators just like New York and California. So...

That was not a small number of more voting for Dems. 20 million more but guess what-- the system doesn't care because this is not a democracy and I won't say that's altogether bad. Sometimes the majority can be wrong-- they call that a mob. Still, when they go pushing now for huge changes in policies based on their great victory, it pays to look at what that victory really was. 

In many states, there were only 40% or less of the registered voters even voting. So what exactly did this election tell us? That the poor, who might be savaged by the Republican majority (if they can overturn vetoes), should have been out there voting. But even if they had, just the way the Senate is set up would still lean toward benefiting the right wing. Their states have less population and are going more and more toward the right some for religious reasons and some out of fear the government is planning to take away their guns...

Many of these small states have also gone heavily to right wing legislatures which means there will be more abortion restrictions, lower taxes on the rich, more cuts to programs for the poor and the public schools, and environment??? oh, you mean that commie plot...Will we make progress on racial issues? Currently, it does not seem likely with the increased resentment on both sides.

And so we will head into the next two years while both parties choose a presidential nominee, who likely many Americans won't prefer but will be stuck with again because the parties dominate these elections with money.

Many Americans are more or less immune to the problems the poor face. I just saw a Forbes report on the most dangerous cities for crime in the US. Detroit, of course, topped the list but many other major cities were on it. The thing to keep in mind is most Americans living in those cities in upper middle class or even middle class neighborhoods won't face any of this. They are able to look around their own little world and see it as being secure. Do they then care about what it's like in inner city schools or the projects? They don't want to even know and with resentment against taxes as it is, they sure don't want to pay to change it.

We have 22 Veterans try to kill themselves every day but now retiring Senator Coburn blocked $20 million dollars to cover insurance programs to help them. Too much money. Well, if you don't have someone in your family suffering the problem, guess it does seem like too much.

I wonder though, with so many Americans insulated or trying to insulate themselves from what goes on outside their sphere, will it stay safe for them? Yes, their crime risk is low... for now. They aren't likely to run into a street robbery unless they visit some of those less safe neighborhoods.

Several newspapers have been writing about how much safer the world is today than it has been. I am not sure that means a lot. What if you live in Venezuela? How about the projects in Chicago? It's safer for whom? Outside of those known dangerous neighborhoods, it's more apt to be random crime. My son says he thinks the world is really governed by chaos. I've always argued that it's a benevolent universe. But chaos might better explain a lot of what we see today. The unexpected, unplanned, that sometimes blesses us and sometimes-----

"Chaos is the science of surprises, of the nonlinear and the unpredictable. It teaches us to expect the unexpected. While most traditional science deals with supposedly predictable phenomena like gravity, electricity, or chemical reactions, Chaos Theory deals with nonlinear things that are effectively impossible to predict or control, like turbulence, weather, the stock market, our brain states, and so on. These phenomena are often described by fractal mathematics, which captures the infinite complexity of nature. Many natural objects exhibit fractal properties, including landscapes, clouds, trees, organs, rivers etc, and many of the systems in which we live exhibit complex, chaotic behavior. Recognizing the chaotic, fractal nature of our world can give us new insight, power, and wisdom. For example, by understanding the complex, chaotic dynamics of the atmosphere, a balloon pilot can “steer” a balloon to a desired location. By understanding that our ecosystems, our social systems, and our economic systems are interconnected, we can hope to avoid actions which may end up being detrimental to our long-term well-being."   from Fractal Foundation on Chaos Theory

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