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Archive for the ‘paradox’ Category

Heartless? What’s heart? Since when did that have anything to do with anything?

Wednesday, September 6th, 2017

[ by Charles Cameron — and to think I thought that little red heart was just an emoticon! ]
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The Washington Post, supposedly a paper which takes political matters seriously, featured this caption in its email to me today:

Is this heart thing something to be taken seriously? Just on occasion, as with the impact of cancelling DACA on people who were, at least recently, children? Or in matters of economics, too? And the deployment, threat and use of nuclear weapons? In diplomacy?

I mean, the number of situations in which this somewhat vague “heart” entity might be invoked and prioritized is hard to estimate. What was it Pascal said?

The heart has reasons reason knows not of..

That in itself is a somewhat confusing statement. Is it a paradox?

Ah well, I’ll retire to poetry: poets, after all, think themselves the “unacknowledged legislators of the world” — and as one of them legislated not so very long ago:

My heart rouses
          thinking to bring you news
                    of something
that concerns you
          and concerns many men. Look at
                    what passes for the new.
You will not find it there but in
          despised poems.
                    It is difficult
to get the news from poems
          yet men die miserably every day
                    for lack
of what is found there.

What is found there? This heart thing, perhaps? Heart’s the second word in that poetry bit — it could be worth a try.

What the tweet proclaims..

Monday, August 28th, 2017

[ by Charles Cameron — c’mon, WaPo ]
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What the tweet proclaims at time of posting [upper panel].. and what you get when you go there [below]:

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Sources:

  • WaPo, tweet
  • WaPo, article
  • Unified is not duelling: please make up your mind, WaPo.

    Both side of both sides, a DoubleTweet

    Thursday, August 24th, 2017

    [ by Charles Cameron — didn’t i post this? okay, it’s a few days old, but i’ll post it ]
    .

    Trump:

    Obama:

    **

    Both forms of both / and:

    What interests me here is that Trump’s tweet and Obama’s both represent “both / and” positions.

    Obama sees our common humanity cutting across whatever borders of skin color or whatever might be thought to separate us.

    Trump shares the blame equally between the alt-right folk and the folk who were protesting them, when at least arguably the protesters came with (largely) peaceable intent, while the alt-right folk were trying for provocation:

    Note, however, that Trump sees things in exactly the reverse manner — another enantiodromia? From Amy Davidson Sorkin in the New Yorker — Donald Trump, from His Tower, Rages at “the Other Side” in Charlottesville:

    You had a group on one side that was bad and you had a group on the other side that was also very violent. And nobody wants to say that. But I’ll say that right now.” The bad group was the white nationalists; the “very violent” group was those who had come to object. In case anyone missed his point, he continued, “You had a group on the other side that came charging in—without a permit—and they were very, very violent.” Trump wasn’t putting the two sides on the same level; he was saying that the counter-protesters were worse.

    **

    There’s a very different feel to the two kinds of “both / and” IMO — Trump’s actually favoring one side in a conflict and protecting it by shifting some of the blame away from it, while Obama’s is neutral as to sides (though in the case of racists vs non-racists, he’d presumably favor the non-racists.

    My head buzzes: an interesting little logical knot, I think.

    AQAP, the Trolley Problem — and child mind..

    Tuesday, August 15th, 2017

    [ by Charles Cameron — a new terror-tactic from the terrorists ]
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    We’ve dealt with the trolley problem before here on ZP, in Trolleys come to Terror and A real-life situation not unlike the trolley problem, but with the recent online oublication of AQAP’s Inspire magazine #17, the jihadists have at last made their own view on the topic known — and if the illustration, bottom panel above, is anything to go by, this time they’re in favor of saving lives, not taking them.

    **

    Oops — when you read the whole article, you’ll see that they’re actually recommending train derailment as a tactic, in much the same way they recommended pressure-cooker bombs and “mowing truck” assaults in earlier issues.

    Damn.

    **

    And then again, ICYMI..

    Never trust anyone under the age of three..

    Fire and Fury — a fair or unfair borrowing?

    Saturday, August 12th, 2017

    [ by Charles Cameron — how can anyone accurately judge the rage of another — and what happens if we simply can’t, but need to take precautions against it? ]
    .

    President Trump certainly spoke of visiting “fire and fury” on the DPNK as quoted by the Economist in its DeafCon page (upper panel):

    The question is whether the use of the phrase to headline a piece on the Alt-Right torchlight protest at UVa (lower panel) is appropriate or not?

  • Does it trivialize the serious matter of potential nuclear war by applying Trump’s phrase to a mere few hundred protesters,
  • or does it rightly intuit that the fury and fire of the Trump-Bannon platform — as applied to the DPNK nuclear program — is of the same cloth as the fury and fire of the protesters, and thus entirely applicable and appropriate?
  • **

    For the second time today:

    Metaphors, analogies, parallelisms, paradoxes — my stock in trade — are delicate matters, and should be treated with care.


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