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Fruit of the poisonous tree

Monday, December 14th, 2015

[ by Charles Cameron — a thought provocation ]
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Poison tree

Strange fruit:

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Fruit of the poisonous tree is an American legal doctrine:

This doctrine holds that evidence gathered with the assistance of illegally obtained information must be excluded from trial. Thus, if an illegal interrogation leads to the discovery of physical evidence, both the interrogation and the physical evidence may be excluded, the interrogation because of the exclusionary rule, and the physical evidence because it is the “fruit” of the illegal interrogation.

Sunday surprise in seven volumes and a cake

Sunday, December 13th, 2015

[ by Charles Cameron — jihadist and western video versions of Marcel Proust’s memory of a madeleine ]
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Jihad first, since this is a strategy blog:

The same tale, as told for a soft western audience:

Thank you for your kind attention.

Sunday surprise: nunchucks and katana

Sunday, November 15th, 2015

[ by Charles Cameron — weaponry in advertising and robotics — just some light weekend viewing ]
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You may have seen these already — they go nicely together, I think, though I might be hard pressed to say why.

and:

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Further reading:

  • The Bruce Lee Ping Pong Video. Cool, But Not Real
  • Samurai Robot Challenges Human Sword Master
  • Sunday surprise – beauties, Beauty

    Sunday, September 6th, 2015

    [ by Charles Cameron — i’m inclined to call these beauties respective variants on Beauty physical, mental, and spiritual ]
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    Beauty is beautiful, and never more so than when she conveys Beauty:

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    The beauties:

  • Surfer Maud Le Car
  • Violinist Hilary Hahn
  • Professor Lera Boroditsky
  • I’ve posted la belle Hélène‘s interpretation of the Bach-Busoni Chaconne on Zenpundit before, but in case you missed it, there’s also..

  • Pianist Hélène Grimaud
  • The quantity of mercy is not strain’d?

    Wednesday, August 12th, 2015

    [by Charles Cameron — some remedial philosophy at age 71 ]
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    I seem to be doing remedial political philosophy this week. As it happens, I read a Chinese comedian in my youth and was admonished against “sitting down while running round in circles” and have been aerating my brain with too much conscious breathing ever since — neither leaving me much time or interest for what in Oxford in my day was known, somewhat dismissively, PPE — Philosophy, Politics and Economics.

    Which brings me today, and to grabbing lectures in just that sort of thing from Harvard’s Michael Sandel, courtesy of YouTube:

    The video shows Sandel’s lectures, “Justice: Putting a Price Tag on Life”, and “How to Measure Pleasure” — salted with some dark humor:

    Back in ancient Rome, they threw Christians to the lions in the Coliseum for sport. If you think how the utilitarian calculus would go, yes, the Christian thrown to the lion suffers enormous, excruciating pain, but look at the collective ecstasy of the Romans. .. you have to admit that if there were enough Romans delirious with happiness, it would outweigh even the most excruciating pain of a handful of Christians thrown to the lion.

    I enjoyed the two lectures immensely — maybe I should rewind fifty years, and try PPE at Harcard?.

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    All of which caused me to wonder:

    SPEC pinto and lincoln continental

    Sources:

  • Mark Dowie, Pinto Madness
  • W Michael Hoffman, Case Study: The Ford Pinto
  • See also:

  • ES Grush and CS Saunby, Fatalities Associated with Crash-Induced Fuel Leakage and Fires
  • **

    I mean, all of which made me wonder about Jeremy Bentham, I suppose.

    We had Locke at Christ Church, staring disdainfully from his portrait during dinners in the Great Hall — but Bentham? I don’t think I saw any utility in utilitarianism.

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    But then I also wondered:

    SPEC trolley problem torture

    I wondered: how close is the analogy between the trolly problem and the ticking bomb torture questionn? Do we start from numbers of likely victims in each case and decide from there, or should we instead start by contemplating torture — and recognize the abyss staring back at us?

    Sources:

  • Wikipedia, Trolly problem
  • Michael Sandel, Justice: Putting a Price Tag on Life & How to Measure Pleasure
  • See also:

  • Kyle York, Lesser-Known Trolley Problem Variations
  • **

    What Shakespeare said, though — getting back to my title — was “The quality of mercy is not strain’d” — not the quantity, the quality — unquantifiable.


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