About Numbers

A while ago in the intellectual communities on Facebook there was a discussion in which someone came up with the idea that God necessarily needs to exist because only God could read (infinite) irrational numbers like pi. Another one countered that Gödel´s incompleteness theorem would allow that (i.e. that stuff exists that cannot be proven or verified). Somehow both assertions seem inadequate, but make you think about the nature of numbers (and mathematics) which is actually a mysterious and haunting subject. However, upon reflection, numbers simply express how quantifiable properties relate to each other. Out of an r you can construct a circle with pi, an ever more perfect circle with the more digits of pi you know, the perfect circle, constructed with infinite precision, cannot be constructed in a finite universe. Likewise, if you have a basket with two apples and want to have one with three, you can do that, with infinite precision, by adding one apple to the basket. Numbers, in themselves, are neither platonic nor are they real, they are virtualities / virtual entities.

I have thought about the continuum hypothesis, the orders of the infinite, the incompleteness theorem, whether the universe is a mathematical system or a logical syllogism a while ago. Some say that by applying logics they can see it all, and maybe that is true, nevertheless with logics you can construct pretty much anything of your liking (apart from that a logically correct conclusion need not be based on a correct assumption). Lots of stuff, for instance proofs of God, have been constructed with logic – but all of them can also be refuted by using logics (see, comprehensively, John Mackie´s The Miracle of Theism if you´re interested). Usually the philosophers and theologians coming up with their proofs of God were thinking that they did not prove the existence of God by using logic but, literally, that they were proving the necessary existence of God out of logic, although to every neutral observer it was apparent that there was something wrong, wobbly, uncanny in their proofs, although it is not necessarily easy to exactly tell what the problem is. Often it may require an entirely new heuristics, and for instance it took centuries to exactly tell what is wrong with Zeno´s paradoxa. Metaphysical questions may be undecidable, not least because they´re paradoxical in nature.

And then, the incompleteness theorem… Despite its apparent gravity and the mysteriousness it seems to imply the incompleteness theorem hardly affects professional mathematician´s business. I have never read Gödel´s original paper and maybe would not understand it since maths, among other things, is not my speciality, however as far as I can see it is about the „paradox“ of the barber who shaves anyone but himself or the Cretans lying. Despite there is no logical solution to that paradoxes they will somehow be solved in practice without too many trouble (or if we applied „fuzzy logics“ we could formalize stuff or so, idk…). Maybe a kind of solution to it, respectively shedding some light on the mystery the incompleteness theorem seems to imply, comes in a way Cantor „solved“ the mystery of infinite sets – when he made the „paradoxes“ they carry their defining element. There is also this stuff: hyperinfinite sets. They can be constructed, but their existence cannot be proven, and under Occam´s Razor they may seem a nuisance (because they seem to add more orders of the infinite that seems to be needed). Given the incompleteness theorem, the mysterious hyperinfinite sets may either exist or not. However, certain mathematical objects, like knots, can be better conceptualised under the assumption that hyperinfinite sets do exist, be their existence only theoretical (under the assumption of hyperinfinite sets something is possible to construct about the understanding of knots, as an „indirect“ proof that would lead to the possibility of a more direct proof that could eventually do without the assumption of hyperinfinite sets). Apparently, the virtual again. When you think about numbers (and mathematical objects), especially about odd numbers, complex numbers – or negative numbers, or zero, or infinite sets that have puzzled humans for so long, you may become aware that they´re virtual entities.

WIthout the concept of the virtual we´re actually pretty fucked up if we tried to understand the nature of numbers, I guess. It can be argued that numbers are, e.g., platonic, and there are some indications to it, likewise there are other indications that taking them as platonic entitities does not actually apply. With Virtual Reality the notion of the virtual has become somehow more mainstream. Before that it has been prominent within the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze. In thinking and conceptualising about the virtual Deleuze draw on fellow philosopher Henri Bergson – and on Marcel Proust, i.e. neither a philosopher nor a scientist nor a mathematician but a literary genius who, concerning the virtual, was ruminating about how to grasp the qualities of memory. I cannot remember who it was but it was some eminent mathematician who noted that even the most abstract and aloof maths sooner or later is bound to somehow become applicable when trying to get a grasp on something in reality. It is all a gigantic network, hahahahaha.

In his book Infinity and the Mind Rudy Rucker described how it was when he had a personal encounter with Gödel. Despite popular beliefs that he was bizarre the elderly Gödel had, as it seemed to Rucker, the statue of a very wise man who seemed to have thought about everything in life, thoroughly and concise; something that people would also remark about the elderly Wittgenstein. Rucker noted that Gödel had the habit that when completing a sentence or statement he would often exalt his voice and break into a ringing laughter, in an obvious gesture of adding some irony and leaving room for calling into question the things he just stated with such rigid logic and that seemed to be so perfectly concise – bravo, that´s the spirit! Wittgenstein was also so eminent at logics that he used logic for accelerating perplexedness. When the elderly Wittgenstein displayed the profoundly wise man to others the effect was ambiguous, as Wittgenstein on the one hand seemed to have thought about everything, including the more mundane things in life, but would enter a discussion about everything with great intensity, devotion and sternness (including conversations about the more mundane things in life), so that people usually on the one hand felt enriched and that they had received valuable advice but that they sort of had been overrun by a tank on the other hand (conversations with Emily Dickinson seemed to have been of a similar quality). – A while ago I have noticed that Kripke is considered as one of the definitely most important philosophers of the last 200 years. Kripke explained Wittgenstein to a more general population after Wittgenstein´s death. Kripke is an analytical philosopher and so far I have not read much about him. I read however that most of his (more recent) works are lectures and he himself does not seem to care so much about them being published, because his mind is obviously working too fast for caring about such mundane things – bravo, that´s the spirit! Kripke however is silent about many other things a philosopher would be expected to be vocal about. I have read that, in personal encounters, Kripke appears like a very intelligent person, yet something somehow is missing, a certain human element. – I said this about Kripke because as an association it came to my mind, it also somehow fits into this note and it is, apart from that, informative, and I like to inform people about all kind of stuff because I like to get informed about all kind of stuff myself.

This note about numbers may be dilettante, I am not a professional mathematician, I have not thought a lot about it, and I am occupied with doing other things at the moment. But I don´t see an error with conceptualising numbers as virtual entities. So far for now.

Network Update

When I was walking through the Praterallee before some thoughts came to my mind about the incompleteness theorem, set theory, theory of everything, info-cognition, reality as a language, Zeno’s paradoxa, Cantor’s mathematical innovations, internal vs external consistecny of and within systems, the nature of consciousness, the nature of language, metalanguage, Chomsky vs Wittgenstein, whether there is a heart of it all or finally an evolutionary (or degenerative) interplay of heterogenous sets at the deep structure, also concerning human intelligence taken as ability to carry out manipulations within symbolic systems and then whether there is an underlying structure to „symbol systems“ or they are also, at the core, heterogenous, etc. and how all of this is connected. I eagerly wanted to read David Foster Wallace` book about Cantor on this behalf after I would be at home again, but now I am doing nothing, not even thinking in any relevant fashion. Maybe later. Maybe I listen to Nervosa next, because they’re furious and cute. It is hot in Vienna today. Anyway, my network is apparently getting ever more dense and robust. That will feel good.

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About Hyperinfinite Sets, Again

Because I – cautiously – thought it could meet some resonance there I posted my note about Count Scelsi in the Pretentious Classical Music Elitists group yesterday. It contains things that are the most substantial and are the most sympathetic that can be said about Scelsi, as always when I say something it is among the most substantial and the most sympathetic that can be said about the respective subject. It got zero Likes from the Pretentious Elitists, and at least the statement about how to properly understand economics I posted on my timeline yesterday received one Like after many hours. Rumi says, in God´s world nothing is more difficult to bear than the absurd. Fortunately I don´t predominantly see the absurd, I only see hyperinfinite sets, like Attar, which practically seems to imply that while I can relate to a lot of different, and heterogenous groups, the divergences prevail everywhere. At least people who know me generally like me. Why not, I also generally like people, try to constructive in general. Ubi bene, ibi patria.

Economics 1

I think I will get me this book. Years ago I penetrated into economics, quite broadly, and deeply, but since 1) a career as a professional economist, or any professional, did not work out 2) I did not have the impression that I could reach the innermost invisible core of the entire discipline right then 3) other things came to my mind, it went off my radar, so maybe I should brush up and move on now. Maybe now some things come to my mind about economics and how it is situated, and mirrored, within the Welträtsel. That will feel good.

They say economics is a dismal science but this is due to its nature which is about predicting presumably rational behaviour, or events happening along a rational trajectory, within a complex environment. Predicting unfolding of rationality is (more or less) a complicated problem i.e. it is difficult to solve but it can be solved and a more or less definitive, finite solution can be given. A complex problem, by contrast, can never definitely be solved and is infinite, it can only be handled by trying to take everything possible into account and to be ever open to accept the seemingly impossible and to see everything as moving objects and to be quick to readjust. To tackle the complicated is a matter of a formalised language, but the complex probably can never be translated into a formalised system, and the ability to handle it will more or less remain an artistry than calculus (see e.g. Dietrich Dörner´s „The Logic of Failure: Recognizing And Avoiding Error In Complex Situations“). That interplay of complicated problems situated in a complex context makes economics an actually very difficult science which actually needs to be learned. It cannot be easily understood per se although, when you are somehow intelligent, it seems to be this way, creating and maintaining an illusion (which is resemblant to that what in psychology is called the Dunning-Kruger effect). Much within it cannot be drawn from logical conclusion or fluid intelligence and much of it is counterintuitive, lessons have to be drawn from practical experience and from history, i.e. as an economist you also need to have crystallized intelligence, through accumulation.

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Economists are, practically, fond of calculus, and the critics of the (mainstream) economist branch mock that they are trying to do a kind of physics and put upon a physicist´s approach upon that which is actually the social realm, which can, therefore, „never work out“. That is, then, the ignorance of the crititics of economics which also never works out and usually comes in with the same, or even more pronounced, arrogance they – rightfully – attribute to the branch of mainstream economists. In an act which is actually an act of despair mainstream economists try to come to terms with an imperfect world by modelling a perfect world in which, then, law of „physics“ would apply. Herein they can offer perfect solutions. But in reality you always have imperfect situations and settings so that you practically would have to model second-best options. And it is very difficult, if not – ever – impossible to model second-best options. Much of the dismal character of economics can be attributed to that. In another light, as is noted in the article, economists often seem to be more concerned about the internal consistency of their approaches than of the external consistency and such „mentalities“ create path-dependencies along which problems generally are seen and tried to be tackled.

A practical dismal aspect, given the capability of the human intellect, is that in order to understand economics you have to get familiar with all schools of economic thought since they all contain truths, as well as errors. And when transforming those doctrines into economic policy it is, in addition to that, situational of what may practically be a truth or an error, respectively a right or a wrong approach, which is why policy makers should rather look for an appropriate approach which should be open to some incrementalism. That is to a good deal even beyond the capability of the more extraordinary minds. Keynes said that an ideal economist is so rare because she would have to combine such multiple and diverse intelligence traits that they seldom meet inside one person.

Keynes himself proclaimed that class struggle would find him on the side „of the educated bourgeoisie“ which reflects that economics is to a very high, actually abnormal, degree an ideological battleground, reflecting, of course, also the difference of interests within the social realm. In order to understand economics you not only have to be familiar with all economic schools of thought and their rights and their wrongs, but you have to try to sort this all out free of ideologically constrained epistemology. That is also difficult for humans. The most comprehensive and maybe greatest single economist, Karl Marx, was an ideological fanatic (not without reason, however). Therefore Marx was far less intellectually productive in the second half of his life where he presumably ruminated whether his architecture might not be too narrow or maybe wrong at all, without, however, being ready to draw any conclusions from those ruminations.

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(After writing the voluminous Grundrisse der Kritik der Politischen Ökonomie in only some months because he was expecting a major crisis of capitalism impending with it more or less signifying the great kataklysm of capitalism per se, and then seeing that an economic downturn actually came but, in reality, rather passed by like a cloud than confirming his intellectual sentiments, Marx became to be much less productive as a thinker. He wrote on Capital, to not ever complete it, although the main ideas for Capital had already been outlined in the Grundrisse. He contemplated whether, for instance, not class struggles but rivalries between nations could be the prime mover of history. In general Marx had important and illuminous insights which will be here to stay forever and he enriched our understanding of multiple things, enabled a more complex understanding, but actually never got the essence of anything right, neither of capitalism, nor economics in general, nor of society, of man, of religion, of ideology, of history; and the sophistical concept of the commodity fetisch he replaced with an unrecognized „capital fetish“ bewildering the anticapitalists. (Marx´ and Marxism´s system of thought is constantly oscillating between an open, dialectical one and a closed, finite, doctrinarian one, reflecting that as an internal inconsistency of Marx himself.) For instance I guess that if there is any prime mover of history it will be technological progress, but we don´t know how technological progress translates into the making of distinct social realms and what form class struggle or relations between nations will take. I will write a note about Marx and Marxism and, I guess, a second note about the concept of class society and class struggle. To outline the general argument of the second one: Marx proposed a dialectics, actually some kind of hydraulics in the evolution of society, along the line of class struggle. You have the development of the productive forces, creating a mode of production, and within the mode of production you have the members of classes acting as agents of the reproduction and finally the transformation of the system, resembling actually a structural functionalism with internal dialectics which will fuck everything up (i.e. a meta-structural functionalism or so). Seeing that such a perspective is not globally appropriate Marx then spoke of an Asian mode of production which obiously does not work along those lines (so easily). Wittfogel made an attempt how to tackle the problem of the Asian mode of production and that of the evolvement of societies in general, Jared Diamond is a famous example of a holisitic approach upon the development of societies and economic systems in our time #alwaysremember #neverforget. The concept of class society however seems to imply that classes are a reflection of something that is inherently productive. But when you look at many societies social stratification does not seem to be insanely dialectically productive with the ruling class or the elite being more or less only extractive based on social relations which are clientilistic, and they are in a deadlock for centuries or maybe forever; see e.g. Acemoglu/Robinson´s „Why Nations Fail“.)

 

I have read hundreds of books, papers, essays on economics, international political economy, globalisation studies, economic history, and development economics. For random reasons Porter´s „Competetive Advantage of Nations“ comes to my mind at the moment. It contains studies what (industrial) strategies have made several, and distinct, nations economically successful. It is somehow strange that the question about the benefits or fallacies of infant industry protection is hardly ever properly adressed in modern day economics and its textbooks, where infant industry protection is disfavored although successful Western and Asian nations relied on it, whereas, granted, in other nations it was a failure (or something resemblant to a failure). Well, the secret to successful infant industry protection lies in protecting the national infant industry from competition from the world market but not on the domestic market. Because of competition on the domestic market infant industries in successful nations increased their productivity and became therefore fit for competition on a global scale, whereas in Latin American or African countries infant industries were also protected from competition on the domestic market and therefore did not get very far. That is a key message of Porter´s book. I remember Keynes´ „General Theory“ to be badly written and not easily accessible. Hyman Minsky somehow always says the same. The time when I was obsessed about economics was the time when Kindleberger died. Kindleberger died in 2003 and I studied economics for my doctoral thesis which I completed in 2004. In 2005 I wrote a postgraduate thesis „Problems and Perspectives in Contemporary World Order“ where I tried to discuss all international problems of our time on 50 pages, and on p. 27 it says: „Nevertheless, one should avoid too optimistic thinking concerning the unlikeliness of serious economic trouble the USA might slip into at almost any point of time. Too many are the sins of carelessness within the American economy: saving rates are low, the sectors of the „old economy“ are relatively unproductive and at the real estate market a major bubble could burst.“ (I was familiar with such things because they have been frequently reported in, for instance, The Economist magazine but no one, apart from a few like Robert Brenner, took the warning signs serious enough, including me.) After having written the thesis I found it superficial, neglected it, became depressed about it, but of course my supervisors also never really understood what an omega mind I carry, respectively did not care. I also did not understand that I carry the omega mind back then since having the omega mind means permanently falling into the abyss and being somehow devoid of orientation as well as ususally operating at such a high level of abstraction that what the omega mind ejects then is in danger of being mistaken as „practically“ useless. The omega mind is actually not easy to understand, due to its complexity. People like me are seen as „intelligent, but strange“, and therefore neglected. But we are not strange. We are hypernormal. This is not very well understood about us. However it is true our proper place are not the institutions but is in the twilight zone. Jenseits des Gradienten. The omega mind is not academic and does not fit into disciplines, is also not interdisciplinary, nor transdisciplinary, nor a-disciplinary and is also not interested in doing complexity studies, it tries to establish a productive mimesis of the all seeing eye. And communication is impaired between the omega mind and other minds. Yet we will shoot back. Behold.

 

 A good book about a critical assessment of economics is the one by Amitai Etzioni whose title I cannot remember and cannot find now on the internet.

I have, however, never read Adam Smith. #theroadahead

I have bought an old textbook about industrial economics at a cheap price at the university some years ago but still not have read it. Same thing goes for the big bad book by Kahnemann. I have, however, read Thaler and Sunstein´s book „Nudge“ about behavioural economics.

This week it came to my mind I also want to write a note about the „Dostojevski Idiot and the incompleteness theorem within human morals“. As I have mentioned the concept of mimesis I came to remember that I also want to finally read sociologist Gabriel de Tarde who based his grasp on society on a concept of mimesis. He is not very well known but was one or the other time mentioned by Deleuze and Guattari; at his time he was overshadowed by Durkheim as well as modern French sociology is overshadowed by Bourdieu. I have read some Bourdieu, but no Durkheim so far.

 

My somehow sincere penetration into economics has resulted in that I find myself to have practically nothing to say about economics respectively about economic affairs. That is too difficult. I would need to study a lot about every case until I feel ready to say something about it. Everyone on Facebook for instance said something about Greece, notably the referendum triggered by Tsipras a while ago. Yet in the case of Greece it was difficult to see through the fog and to get what information presented by different channels even was correct and reliable, and because 1) I was not responsible for the situation 2) I cannot do anything about the situation I did not engage a lot about the Greek case; but I checked out that Leela Papadioti from Greece who in the World Genius Directory is listed with a 180 IQ issued a statement at the day before the referendum in which she very thoughtful, non-triumphant, trying to be as objective and unideological as deemed possible to her made an assessment (in favor of Tsipras), admitting that the situation is troubling and confusing; whereas people with IQs much lower than that all seemed to know so well what should have been done, in their usual demeanor to make Greece, and everything else, a toy with which they play in their ideologically motivated games. – With an eminent IQ score one should become eminently rational, at very high IQ levels hyper-rationality should come into being. That means an ever reflexive or meta-rationality and being unpersonal yet intellectually highly involved and emotionally sympathetic in assessments, like e.g. Einstein or Wittgenstein exercised. Viewed from the outside, hyper-rationality appears like overthinking, which is sometimes ridiculed by people as well as by overthinkers themselves. But without overthinking nothing would have ever come into being at all and we would still live in the stone age, not discussing the Greek case. Thinking IS overthinking. As anyone can, within certain ranges, be rational, everyone can be hyper-rational. Be like Leela. I also asked Evangelos Katsioulis, a Greek who probably has the highest IQ in the world (maybe around 200), about his assessment of the referendum, but he did not reply.
Book review: Michel De Vroey and the problems of macroeconomics
„The master-economist must possess a rare combination of gifts …. He must be mathematician, historian, statesman, philosopher—in some degree. He must understand symbols and speak in words. He must contemplate the particular, in terms of the general, and touch abstract and concrete in the same flight of thought. He must study the present in the light of the past for the purposes of the future. No part of man’s nature or his institutions must be entirely outside his regard. He must be purposeful and disinterested in a simultaneous mood, as aloof and incorruptible as an artist, yet sometimes as near to earth as a politician.“ – John Maynard Keynes
                                    Yellen Challenges Economists Amid Elusive Great Recovery

Problems and Perspectives in Contemporary World Order

(I edited some comments I made on a thread in the Polymathica group into a note, content relating to a master thesis I wrote years ago at the university. Ahhh … apart from that not much is happening inside me at the moment, before my inner eye, looking inside my mind, the current vision is a yellow-coloured space and there are three black dots in it forming some triangle, these days I keep looking at them, watching them in silence and inertia, not producing, or feeling the urge to produce, overly relevant thoughts. Incipit Zarathustra.)

 

In 2005 I wrote a pretentious Master thesis at the university titled „Problems and Perspectives in Contemporary World Order“ in which I tried to discuss all the current major world problems as well as current and prospective developments in the world regions on 50 pages. In the introduction I ruminated that a heuristic framework in which the New (post Cold War) World Order may be conceptualised is established by a coordinate system made out of the „Fukuyama Narrative“ on the one hand and of the „Huntington Narrative“ on the other.

The „Fukuyama Narrative“, established in „The End of History“, in general, argues that after the end of the Cold War respectively the system competition between capitalism and communism, with capitalism respectively free markets (and liberal democracy) having „won“, there are no principled conflicts (Grundsatzkonflikte) in the world anymore and the world is headed for (cultural, political, social and economic) „unification“. Look at science fiction movies where foreign planets with advanced civilisations are usually governed by a planetary government – the road ahead seems intuitively clear (which does not, however, mean: straight). In a globalised world respectively a world dominated by reason and by looking after the common good multilateralism or global governance and a unified spirit seem imperative (at least in the child´s eye and children are always right). The „Fukuyama Narrative“ is Hegelian and stands in the tradition of enlighenment, given at least the more blunt implications of a reading/reception of the „Fukuyama Narrative“ however it is a (probably, likely) dangerous and undialectical, naive form of enlightenment ideology. And at the time when I wrote the thesis the Bush II administration seemed to be guided by such a spirit in their (originally much more far-reaching neoconservative/PNAC) endeavours to bomb in democracy into the Middle East. (Many motives have come into play for marching into Iraq, with George W.´s inferiority complex as the family idiot trying to „get the job done where daddy didn´t“ being one of them, but more general toppling governments hostile to the USA and replacing them with friendly ones as a neoconservative agenda mixed with a genuine hope to promote democracy and progress in the world and, most important, getting a foot in the region: according to an article I read only once (in Harper´s magazine) Cheney´s idea was that with Turkey, Saudi-Arabia and Iraq being allies to the USA US global hegemony would have been secured for the next 50 years, as being the core motive for the Iraq war.) Before that the Western world was guided by such a „Fukuyman“ spirit when it promoted hardcore neoliberalism for the ex-communist countries in Eastern Europe after the fall of the Soviet empire, with mixed results, at best. The „Fukuyama Narrative“ has become somehow prevalent or the underlying narrative among globalisation enthusiasts, another prominent label for it is e.g. the maxime about „the world is flat“ established by Thomas Friedman.

Huntington´s book „The Clash of Civilisations“ was written as a critical reaction to Fukuyama. In general, the „Huntington Narrative“ is based on the concept that principled conflicts are still in place and likely to remain indefinitely (with, however, the nature of principled conflicts shifting), where Huntington argues that the dividing lines of the nearer future lie across cultural dividing lines. Although Huntington´s thesis and argumentation was in the utmost majority of cases disapproved or modified (for instance that the actual dividing lines for conlicts will not lie along the grand cultural divides since actually different cultures like Orient and Occident are more likely to be indifferent to each other, but rather in the (seeming) „narcissism of the small differences“ e.g. between Sunna and Shia, etc.) it was a major work of reference, and, as I argued, in the light of the general implication: namely that principled conflicts are not a thing of the past, not a thing which can be, in the spirit of enlightenment, resolved within „rational discourse“ but are likely to remain. On an abstract level the „Fukuyama Narrative“ is about a world headed for community based on mutually shared values and mentality, the „Huntington Narrative“ is about idiosyncracies and (core) differences between people and peoples likely to remain indefinitely. Yet this does not mean that cooperation and becoming closer to each other and unusual, unexpected marriages are impossible or rare (among people as well as among peoples). „Huntington“ is a nemesis to „Fukuyama“ – but also it is the other way round. That may be the, somehow more complicated and diffuse, dialectics of contemporary world order.

So, made up by that coordinates, the question of new world order seems to be: is the world headed for unification and peace or for conflict and divide? And the answer is that within that practical framework complexities are likely to arise which go over the head of politicians and people. This seems to have been confirmed by the developments in the last 10 years. Note also that a defining question for world politics will be what power blocks will stand against each other and in what relationship to each other in the future, and current attempts obviously are about forging such power blocks which, by nature, does include both inclusion and exclusion (or exclusive inclusion as the West seems to try with Russia, which the West tries to weaken in order to subjugate Russia; also consider the ongoing politics to reshape the Middle East, etc.). The relationships within and between the power blocks are likely to be more flexible and fluid, yet maybe also more fragile, unstable and unpredictable, triggering additional policy errors. Concerning the prospects of a world government it was, somehow ironically, Fukuyama himself who, a decade after the publication of „The End of History“ (in 2002) called such an idea, prominent in the West, naive, also in the respect that the larger and more comphrehensive the political entities are the less are the chances that they are democratic and that the multitude can identify with them. What can be said however is that governance in the new world order will/should involve many layers and that people of very high intelligence who are usually excluded from institutions of any sort but who are able to oversee those layers should be included the respective institutions.

The question for democracy in the world is also settled within that coordinate system. It has been argued that in most world regions democracy is „not wanted“ as a perceived cultural artefact of the West, alien and inappropriate for, for instance, Russia, China, Saudi-Arabia or African countries – and not only by Russian etc. leaders but by the populace themselves. Yet democracy was alien in the Western world as well up to recently and the hostility of the insecure European elites and significant parts of the general population like the petty bourgeoisie against the democratic regimes installed after WW1 led to the dictatorships which led to WW2 (however it has to be noted that without the devastations caused by the Great Depression history would likely have gone in another direction). For the most part of history man has been reluctant or hostile to change and progress and feared it. That people are (relatively) open to progress is a new phenomenon and clusters in the industrialised world. Note that for the most time in history man struggled against nature on a day to day basis and established routines were literally held sacred as providing security, and deviations were seen as great dangers to survival, not in a few cases, because of the usual trial and error method with which innovations come into being, for justified reasons. A friend of mine once worked at a developmental project in Ethiopia. Well, it was largely about transfering money from one pocket to the other, apart from that he made the observation that the major obstacle to change and to do something against the hunger in the land was the ordinary farmer´s resistance to try out new agricultural methods, because they feared that it might lead to bad harvest. From that perspective the brutal policy in communist countries, notably under Stalin and Mao, to modernise agriculture with the intention to end the recurrent famines become apparent and, despite their horrendous execution, not the work of psychopaths (which neither Stalin nor Mao were, though they have nevetheless been highly unpleasant characters), and at least Mao was praised by Henry Kissinger as a moderniser of China, which, as should be remembered, was unable to emerge from its backwardness against the West for 300 years.

This needs to be taken into account adressing the initial question of the threat whether democracy is applicable for the Middle East or more general in many parts of the world. In order for democracy, innovation and modernisation to succeed it needs to lead to positive results in the first place. The hostility in Europe soon faded (apart from the most memorable consequence of Nazism/Fascism and WW2) when European countries became (economically) successful, however the conditions of the golden age of postwar prosperity in the Western world were in parts contingent, local and unrepeatable, we were lucky, but there are also other opportunities to be lucky, for instance being a late moderniser who initially just has to copy everything and profit from the lessons learned by predecessors in order to progress relatively smoothly and at fast pace like China. Yes, people in Russia, China or Saudi-Arabia may be unfavorable to liberal democracy, maybe also out of an inferiority complex-triggered cultural narcissism against the Occident, but this does not mean they´re right with their assessment. Time and circumstances may overcome that. Of course it has to be noted that social structures and mentalities influence a lot whether liberal democracy can be an option. Western countries were not composed of multiethnical tribal societies with clientilist structures and they were not overly corrupt. Yet China is an example for a highly corrupt and authoritarian country which is (at least at the moment) (economically) successful. In general in should be avoided to look at single factors as supposedly major determinants of how societies respectively complex systems may develop. It is the interplay of many factors which make up for it. Yeah, we are relatively helpless and incompetent foreseeing the future, but the best approach is to know all the single theoretical models and to keep your models open.

The Portland Tribune as a Hyperinfinite Set

I get informed that the Portland Tribune changed the cover pic; very impressive shit. Apart from that I have, among others, The Boston Globe, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, the Sudan Tribune andNKNews – North Korea News in my news feed, but, as a recognize, no newspapers from my own country or the German speaking world in general; alas, I don´t use to read newspapers at all anymore since some time; I also have not read any books the last time; maybe, when I reach the omega level, I also won´t read books anymore; that will feel good. I wonder if, then, I will be entirely disconnected from the man´s world or super/omni-connected; but I guess that´s just the two sides of the same medal, maybe the medal will then become more multidimensional or Calabi-Yau space-like; at the infinity level it may become infinite dimensional; mathematicians who´re into set theory are discussing whether there are hyperinfinite sets; according to Gödel´s incompleteness theorem it may be neither provable nor disprovable whether hyperinfinite sets actually exist, at least certain mathematical objects like knots can easier be conceptualised under the assumption that hyperinfinite sets do exist; that´s the incompleteness theorem in action and that seems to be the sense of the incompleteness theorem; there are also some mathematicians who think there is no infinity but a very large number n where n+1 again equals 1; when I reach the hyperinfinite level I will have figured everything about that out; that will feel good.

 portlandtribune