Uncertainty‏


When contemplating the property uncertainty‏, as with knowledge, it turns out to be very difficult to provide an uncontentious analysis. Because of its many different conceptions and dimensions, the full value of uncertainty‏ is surprisingly hard to capture. To that end, below is a list of quotations to help sketch a definition of the property uncertainty‏.

“We demand rigidly defined areas of doubt and uncertainty!”
– Douglas Adams

“Il n’est pas certain que tout soit incertain.”
(It is not certain that everything is uncertain.)
– Blaise Pascal

“The mistake is thinking that there can be an antidote to the uncertainty.”
– David Levithan

“As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain; and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.”
– Albert Einstein

“Maturity, one discovers, has everything to do with the acceptance of not knowing.”
– Mark Z. Danielewski

“In these times I don’t, in a manner of speaking, know what I want; perhaps I don’t want what I know and want what I don’t know.”
– Marsilio Ficino

“When in doubt, be ridiculous.”
– Sherwood Smith

“We sail within a vast sphere, ever drifting in uncertainty, driven from end to end.”
– Blaise Pascal

“I think it’s much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers which might be wrong.”
– Richard Feynman

See more: Approximations

Characteristics of Fascism


Fascism is a radical authoritarian nationalist extreme right-wing political ideology. Fascists seek to unify their nation based on commitment to an organic national community where its individuals are united together as one people through national identity. The unity of the nation is to be based upon suprapersonal connections of ancestry and culture through a totalitarian state that seeks the mass mobilization of the national community through discipline, indoctrination, physical training, and eugenics. Fascism also seeks to eradicate perceived foreign influences that are deemed to be causing degeneration of the nation or of not fitting into the national culture.

“Nationalism is an infantile thing. It is the measles of mankind.”
― Albert Einstein

In 2003, Dr. Lawrence Britt examined the fascist regimes of Hitler, Mussolini, Franco, and several Latin American regimes. He found 14 defining characteristics common to each:

1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism – Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.

2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights – Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of “need.” The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.

3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause – The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.

4. Supremacy of the Military – Even when there are widespread
domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.

5. Rampant Sexism – The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Divorce, abortion and homosexuality are suppressed and the state is represented as the ultimate guardian of the family institution.

“Fascism should more appropriately be called Corporatism because it is a merger of state and corporate power” ― Benito Mussolini

6. Controlled Mass Media – Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.

7. Obsession with National Security – Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.

8. Religion and Government are Intertwined – Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government’s policies or actions.

9. Corporate Power is Protected – The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.

10. Labour Power is Suppressed – Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed.

“Fascism is capitalism plus murder.” ― Upton Sinclair

11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts – Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts and letters is openly attacked.

12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment – Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.

13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption – Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.

14. Fraudulent Elections – Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.

“No school can supply an anti-liberal education, or a fascist education, as these terms are contradictory. Liberalism and education are one.”
― George Seldes

22nd Century: Predictions


Here are some amazing predictions about human society and the earth on which we live for the 22nd century. Remember, these are intelligent predictions, whatever really happens remains to be seen.

  • From 2100 onward, 12% (about 1250) of the bird species existing at the beginning of the 21st century are expected to be extinct or threatened with extinction.
  • From the beginning of the 22nd century, human intelligence will be vastly amplified by artificial intelligence.
  • Around the same time, nomadic floating cities will be roaming the oceans.
  • Also, by 2100, Emperor Penguins could be pushed to the brink of extinction due to global climate change, according to a Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution study from January 2009. The study applied mathematical models to predict how the loss of sea ice from climate warming would affect an Antarctica colony of Emperor Penguins, and they forecast a decline of 87% in the colony’s population by the end of the century.
  • In 2110, man-made control of earthquakes and tsunamis will become possible.
  • In 2120, mind uploading will enter mainstream society.
  • From 2130 onwards, a large-scale civilian settlement of the Moon will be underway.
  • From the second half of the 22nd century onwards, interstellar travel will become possible.
  • Also, in 2150, androids will be physically indistinguishable from real humans.
  • In 2160, mass extinctions will level off.
  • Around the same time, the first humans will live to be bicentenarians.
  • In 2180, antimatter power plants are about to start up.
  • In 2182, with an estimated probability of 0.07%, Apollo asteroid 1999 RQ36 (also known as 101955 Bennu) could hit the Earth. It has a mean diameter of approximately 493 meters.
  • In 2190, global languages will have become few in number.
  • According to the UN Population Bureau, life expectancy in 2200 will be around 100 for developed countries and the world population will be about 8.5 billion.

“When the number of factors coming into play in a phenomenological complex is too large scientific method in most cases fails. One need only think of the weather, in which case the prediction even for a few days ahead is impossible.” ― Albert Einstein

See other: Hall of Fame Posts

Simile‏


From the Latin similis meaning ‘similar’. In English, a simile is a figure of speech that uses resembling words like is, than, like or as to describe someone or something by comparing it with someone or something else that is similar.

A simile differs from a metaphor in that the latter compares two unlike things by saying that the one thing is the other thing. Here are some famous examples of simile:

“A room without books is like a body without a soul.”
– Cicero

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”
– Albert Einstein

“A house without books is like a room without windows.”
– Horace Mann

“Character is like a tree and reputation its shadow. The shadow is what we think it is and the tree is the real thing.”
– Abraham Lincoln

“A mind is like a parachute. It doesn’t work if it is not open.”
– Frank Zappa

Tenses in Physics


“Now he has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me. That means nothing. People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.”

– Albert Einstein