A MIND FOREVER VOYAGING THROUGH STRANGE SEAS OF THOUGHT, ALONE


This is my second blog.

My first blog chronicled my experiences over three years caring for my dad as he lived through and finally died from Alzheimer's. That is the book that is for sale.

This second blog kind of chronicles of life, what it is like to start your life over in your late 50's. After caretaking, you are damaged, file bankruptcy, and the world doesn't care what you did. After 8 months of unemployment, you wake each day knowing the world doesn't want you. Finally you do find a job, 5 weeks before homelessness, but doing what you did 30 years ago and getting paid what you did 30 years ago. So this is starting over.



The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

A NATION OF BARNEY FIFE

First of all, going to link a nice little post for you to read:

times-change-out-under-us-


Great article to understand what many feel, and what I'm going to write about today instead of going grocery shopping which I probably should do.

I was kind of shocked when I did some searching through all the dribble I write on this blog and could not find what I am planning to discuss now, I thought for sure I'd written about it but I searched and searched by keywords and nothing came up.   So if I am repeating myself, I'm sorry, let's just call it a senior moment and move on.

Today's chautauqua is going to follow along with the link and what has been underlying many of my posts, though I still can't kick the feeling I've done this before.  See, here is my writing problem.  Most of the time, when I stop and start thinking about something to write, it's late at night, in bed and I get this great idea for a blog and go thru it in my head as I fall asleep; then I wake, get ready for work, work the day, workout, yada yada and never remember that great idea I had last night.  If I stop in the night, turn on the phone, make a note about what to write, I do so without my glasses and even if I can decipher what I typed the next day, the bigger issue is starring at that screen in the dark and suddenly I'm awake again and it takes longer to fall asleep.

All of which has nothing to do with the chautauqua.

Times change, we all know that.  And I'm not going to complain about all the great technological advantages we have today over the past, would I really want to go back to records, 8 tracks or cassettes?  No.  But a simple fact of life, when a new door opens, an old door closes and nobody ever stops to ask which door was really better open?  Or did we really have to give up that door to have this one?

Face it, we live on a speeding train with no one at the controls any longer and it makes many of us very nervous.

Now we have news from china about genetically modified dogs that have twice the muscle mass of  a normal dog, gee, that won't turn out bad.  How'd you like a pack of genetically modified twice as big pit bulls escaping and ravaging the countryside.  It will happen.  Not to worry, next will be tests on human soldiers to created supersoldiers to go after the pit bulls, right.  SciFi has been warning us for decades about super soldiers and here we go.

Are you going to deny your child genetic modification and expect them to be competitive in school, sports, and work against kids that were genetically modified?  A decision to be made soon by generations taught not to think, that should work out fine.  Will that be society of the future, those genetically modified versus those not genetically modified?  Wonder who will server whom?

Most cars built the last 5 years have electronic braking, steering, acceleration; cameras front back and sides to wrestle control from the driver including stopping the car if it determines it should stop.  Nobody knows a phone number, they are all on the phone, along with the rest of your life.  Which is why looking at messages and texts and email and selfies and videos of self etc is what people do today.  Think about it, people spend their day staring into the mirror called a smart phone.

When you apply for a job, credit card, bank loan, car loan etc., it does not get viewed by a human being, it gets run the algorithms before a human will ever see it, if a human ever actually sees it.  Next will come the driverless cars, trucks, planes, trains.  All brought to you by the same people that brought us blue screens of death, intermittent hard resets, lost data and incorrect mapping/ GPS.

And an algorithm is nothing more than a set of instructions to do this or do that given this data and history.  Everything is either/or.  But is life always either/or?  Creativity is looking at a situation perceived to be either/or and finding the third route.

Few people make decisions anymore, algorithms make the decisions.  Computers.  We've given over control of our markets, business, life to computer programs and nobody ever stops and checks if the algorithms are making mistakes, well, other than other algorithms.   See, algorithms learn over time and if bad or incorrect info is collected in an algorithm it will continue considering that false info forever more in it's decisions.

Algorithms are black or white, on or off, nothing in between.  Life is lived in that in between of on and off, black or white.

I'm debating a little this idea for a bike ride across america to take my folks ashes to WV.  Not because the bike ride itself, it's the fact that I can't figure out how to make such a trip, conceal carry, and not come to the conclusion that I will somewhere run into a legal headache with some law enforcement officer.   Yes, I can get a conceal carry permit in CO and it has agreements with all the states I might ride thru, well, except Illinois, which adds at least one thousand miles to my trip avoiding Illinois, but with all that, it still is legal hell.  Or my collapsable baton I carry everywhere, perfectly legal in Colorado, vague in about six of the states I might ride thru and legal if not concealed in others and downright illegal unless you are a cop in one or two.

But even with conceal carry, what if I ride my bike down Main Street in some dink town and have no clue there is a school on the street parallel to Main Street and some local law says you can't have a firearm within 100 yards of a school so when on Main Street I'm technically within 100 yards of a school I don't even know exists and a cop pulls me over and I'm going to have serious legal problems because Barney Fife won.

Yes, Barney Fife won - see, this is the chautauqua - the Andy Griffith show.  The philosophical quandary of Andy and Barney, thesis anti-thesis.  Barney was by the book, if the book/law said X then anyone doing X was arrested, which is why half the town ended in jail any time Andy took a day off.  Andy, on the other hand, understood flexibility, discriminating intent, understanding and decision making.  Barney did not.  And 50 years later, we live in a society of Barney's: lawyers make any such flexibility obsolete, because it might mean discrimination.  No one is fired for following rules and instructions.

Ignorance of the law is no excuse, so to ride across America, I will need to learn over 1.6 million new laws that have been written since just the year 2000, federal laws, state laws, country, township, city, hell probably have laws in those controlled neighborhoods that tell you what color you can paint your home too.  Okay, 16 to 18 states really so 512,000 to 576,000 new laws.

When and how did it get so damn complicated?

Now I don't think it would be wise to tell any police officer he's being Barney, probably won't have a chance to explain the philosophical debate, but we get back to that other little thing.  A cop won't get in trouble, no one gets in trouble, if they follow the rules even when the rules in a given situation might not produce a good result.  Better to let someone else suffer the consequences of badly written badly timed events; just follow the rules.

Now if I'm riding through old Mayberry and Andy pulls me over Andy isn't going to worry about some law in the book of 100 yards when the person obviously has no intention of doing something wrong, Andy would understand that carrying a gun that will stop a cougar, coyote, bear, charging wild pig etc is good common sense when riding thru the countryside.  He might even understand that sometimes you might find yourself having to or unwittingly riding thru a bad area of people who might want to do you harm and having a gun is good common sense.  Seriously, you don't think a southern sheriff in the 1950's and 1960's understood about the 'bad part of town'?

Not with the Barney's though, won't even be able to reason with them and ask, "hey, knowing what you know, would you ride across the country, camping out, riding thru bear, cougar, wild pig areas, would you do it unarmed?" and he'd say nope, but he's a cop so he can do it and not get in trouble from other cops.  I'm a citizen and technically you are in violation of the law and therefore I am placing you under arrest so I don't get in trouble for thinking on the job.

Unequal application of the law, cops can do it, citizens are at the mercy of bad law for the good of society.  Barneyland.  The days of the philosophy of Andy Taylor are gone, we are in the land of Barney.

Once upon a time, Andy was wise, Barney was a joke, the Exorcist scared the crap out of people.  Today, Barney is King and people laugh watching the exorcist and get themselves tattooed and physically modified to look like satanic demons.

They taught three generations to think like an algorithm so they would have no trouble taking the next step and letting algorithms do your thinking for you.

And that is what makes 60 year olds so uneasy today.  We live in a world, live by rules, that don't exist anymore and are awake enough to realize it.

I breakdown in the middle and lose my thread
No one can understand a word that I say
When I breakdown just a little and lose my head
Nothing I try to do can work the same way

Any time it happened, I'd get over it
With a little help from all my best friends
Anybody else could see what's wrong with me
But they walk away and just pretend

When I breakdown

I breakdown in the middle and lose my thread
No one can understand a word that I say
When I breakdown just a little and lose my head
Nothing I try to do can work the same way

Where are all the friends who used to talk to me?
All they ever told me was good news
People that I've never seen are kind to me
Is it any wonder I'm confused?

When I breakdown
When I breakdown

Freedom, freedom, we will not obey
Freedom, freedom, take the wall away
Take the wall away