Monday, August 31, 2015

What Next, Mass Depraved-Heart Murder? - 2

Some Background

This series is following a lawsuit filed in a California federal court against various government officials (What Next, Mass Depraved-Heart Murder?).

Those officials are state government officials (ibid).

In a post on this blog yesterday, I posted about the dangerous and deadly ideology that is firmly implanted within the halls of government (The Authoritarianism of Climate Change).

This case we are following is a perfect example of the hubris, psychopathy, and murderous heart of the authoritarian leaders and their followers (ibid).

Let's first review the first sentence of the complaint, Oil-Qaeda's response, and the plaintiff's reply.

First, the complaint:
"Every month, Occidental and Chevron directly pump 2.63 times more toxic waste water into the San Joaquin Aquifer than oil released into the Gulf during the entire BP spill. The California Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) plans to allow them to continue for another 21 months. This lawsuit brought to stop the poisoning of the San Joaquin aquifer and to remediate the damage already done to the farmland of Kern County."
(What Next, Mass Depraved-Heart Murder?). The defendant authoritarian leader Oil-Qaeda, and its followers, response was in effect "the king can do no wrong," as pointed out in the plaintiff's reply document:
"The State Defendants (Division of Oil, Gas & Geothermal Resources, Timothy Kustic, Mark Nechodom and Edmund G. Brown, Jr.) assert that they are immune from liability because the alleged acts “involve discretionary policy-making decisions.” (ECF 64-1 at 21:5.) The State Defendants cannot cite to any authority for discretionary decisions when it comes to protecting our water. Congress alone has the power to amend the Safe Drinking Water Act (“the Act”. Legal Environmental Assistance Foundation, Inc. v. United States Environmental Protection Agency, 118 F.3d 1467, 1478 (11th Cir. 1997) (“LEAF”). DOGGR received authority from the EPA to enforce the Act and must “prevent underground injection which endangers drinking water sources.” 42 U.S.C. § 300h(b)(1). Even now, Occidental, California Resources, and Chevron (“Oil Companies”) inject billions of gallons of toxic waste water directly into California’s fresh aquifers. The Oil Companies proudly defend the contamination of this water – they claim they had a right and successfully lobbied for these permits. All of the Defendants forget that there is no right to lobby any California employee or elected official to violate a federal law. The only lawful lobbying would have been for the Oil Companies to lobby Congress. Contributing money to campaigns and then being allowed to violate federal law is the essence of racketeering. The Court should deny the motion to dismiss this RICO lawsuit. Indeed, RICO makes clear that no one should corrupt the government process, and water safety should never be tainted with the evidence of bribery, fraud, and extortion. This case is exactly the type of case envisioned when Congress passed the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (“RICO”) in 1970. Congress observed that “money and power are increasingly used to infiltrate and corrupt legitimate business and labor unions and to subvert and corrupt our democratic processes.” United States v. Turkette, 452 U.S. 576, 593, 101 S. Ct. 2524, 2533 (1981)(emphasis added). The United States Supreme Court reversed a dismissal of a RICO case allowing a civil lawsuit involving government corruption that bears striking similarities to this action. H.J. Inc. v. Northwestern Bell Tel. Co., 492 U.S. 229, 109 S.Ct. 2893 (1989). The only significant difference, the corruption in HJ impacted the rates charged telephone customers, not corruption that led to water contamination."
(PLAINTIFFS’ OPPOSITION TO STATE DEFENDANTS’ MOTION TO DISMISS COMPLAINT, p. 11-12, emphasis added). This blog has pointed out that the doctrine "the king can do no wrong" is now called "sovereign immunity."

Sovereign immunity is hypothesized to be a toxins-of-power generated doctrine (Sovereign Immunity Source: Toxins of Power?, cf. Sovereign Impunity: A Child of the Supreme People).

Sovereign Immunity / Impunity Is An Authoritarian Concept

The concept "the king can do no wrong" is an ancient concept of Yin/Yang Chinese philosophy in the Daoist/Taoist tradition based on the authoritarian leader created deceit that "shame and guilt" are illusions (The Authoritarianism of Climate Change).

In modern day America it is the philosophy of authoritarian leaders and authoritarian followers, and perhaps Stockholm Syndrome sufferers, who state in one psychological test after another that "there is no right or wrong" when it involves climbing their way "to the top" (ibid).

In other words, they want to hurt anyone anytime and completely get away with it, and they very often do under the doctrine of sovereign immunity.

Thus, they declare unabashedly in official court papers that they can poison the drinking water of millions of Californians without any recriminations.

Or, kill and damage millions of people annually via global warming induced climate change without any shame or guilt (The Private Empire's Social Media Hit Squads, 2).

So, their expectation is that the victims must pick up the tab (You Are Here - 5).

Sunday, August 30, 2015

The Authoritarianism of Climate Change

General Jesus
I. Introduction

Today we will explore the impact of Authoritarianism on global warming induced climate change.

Specifically, I want to talk about how toxins of power impair and then impel officials to conduct their official business in a way that is suicidal to themselves, while at the same time being murderous toward their constituencies.

In its modern form, within our technological Petroleum Civilization, the principles are the same as with the many societies down through history that did the same thing ad nauseum:
"In other words, a society does not ever die 'from natural causes', but always dies from suicide or murder --- and nearly always from the former, as this chapter has shown."
(A Study of History,  by Arnold J. Toynbee, emphasis added). But, there is a difference between long gone historical civilizations and our civilization.

One difference that is germane to today's post is that with all of the power of weapons of mass destruction (e.g. oil derrick), and their power to destroy The Global Climate System, modern Petroleum Civilization has the capacity to utterly destroy itself along with the human species itself:
If the evolution of civilization has such a far reaching similarity with the development of an individual, and if the same methods are employed in both, would not the diagnosis be justified that many systems of civilization——or epochs of it——possibly even the whole of humanity——have become neurotic under the pressure of the civilizing trends? To analytic dissection of these neuroses, therapeutic recommendations might follow which could claim a great practical interest. I would not say that such an attempt to apply psychoanalysis to civilized society would be fanciful or doomed to fruitlessness. But it behooves us to be very careful, not to forget that after all we are dealing only with analogies, and that it is dangerous, not only with men but also with concepts, to drag them out of the region where they originated and have matured. The diagnosis of collective neuroses, moreover, will be confronted by a special difficulty. In the neurosis of an individual we can use as a starting point the contrast presented to us between the patient and his environment which we assume to be normal. No such background as this would be available for any society similarly affected; it would have to be supplied in some other way. And with regard to any therapeutic application of our knowledge, what would be the use of the most acute analysis of social neuroses, since no one possesses power to compel the community to adopt the therapy? In spite of all these difficulties, we may expect that one day someone will venture upon this research into the pathology of civilized communities. [p. 39]
Men have brought their powers of subduing the forces of nature
to such a pitch that by using them they could now very easily exterminate one another to the last man. They know this——hence arises a great part of their current unrest, their dejection, their mood of apprehension. [p. 40]
(Civilization and Its Discontents, S. Freud, 1929, emphasis added). Those who followed Freud in that field did not bring his vision to fruition.

Thus, a statement by Friedrich Nietzsche has come to fruition: “Insanity in individuals is something rare – but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.”

II. Some Reference Material

To analyze this situation (in terms of how could a civilization, which is considered by itself to be the most advanced in human history, allow such an eventuality), I will reference some helpful and easy-to-obtain material.

One book I will use for reference is The Authoritarians, [that site is gone, so use the Wayback Machine copy] PDF, by Bob Altemeyer of the University of Manitoba.

Another primary source, an article that sheds light on the subject is: Love and Stockholm Syndrome: The Mystery of Loving an Abuser.

III. The Stage

Scientists have been warning officials for over a century about the dangers inherent in damaging the global climate system  (The Exceptional American Denial).

Their warnings have been, and still are, about how the use of fossil fuels, products of the international oil industry, have been causing, and will continue to cause, the Earth to warm then heat up to the point of catastrophe.

Officials have consistently ignored those warnings to the point that catastrophic events are quite frequent now (Civilization Is Now On Suicide Watch, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8).

IV. The Task at Hand For This Post

The task for today's post is to grab hold of, and then take a look at, the dynamics influencing and controlling officials, and the dynamics influencing and controlling the citizenry.

That will entail three events: 1) separating the bad from the good, 2) weighing the good and the bad, and 3) noting the difference in "Stockholm Syndrome" sufferers as being only a matter of degree, that distinguishes them from general "authoritarian followers."

V. The Personalities and Players

The following descriptions come from the book "The Authoritarians", and are identified by a page number following the description.

But first, note this information about the degree to which each personality type has been studied:
"We know an awful lot about authoritarian followers. In one way or another, hundreds of social scientists have studied them since World War II. We have a pretty good idea of who they are, where they come from, and what makes them tick. By comparison, we know little about authoritarian leaders because we only recently started studying them. That may seem strange, but how hard is it to figure out why someone would like to have massive amounts of power? The psychological mystery has always been, why would someone prefer a dictatorship to freedom? So social scientists have focused on the followers, who are seen as the main, underlying problem."
(p. 2, emphasis added). You can see that knowing more about the least powerful, while knowing less about the most powerful, is problematic (About Toxins Of Power).

A. Authoritarian Followers

The authoritarian followers are not necessarily average working class or middle class citizens.

More likely, they are officials who just want to get their pay check and avoid any and all trouble:
"Authoritarian followers usually support the established authorities in their society, such as government officials and traditional religious leaders. Such people have historically been the “proper” authorities in life, the time-honored, entitled, customary leaders, and that means a lot to most authoritarians.
Psychologically these followers have personalities featuring:
1) a high degree of submission to the established, legitimate authorities in their society;

2) high levels of aggression in the name of their authorities; and

3) a high level of conventionalism.
... he’s someone who readily submits to the established authorities in society, attacks others in their name, and is highly conventional. It’s an aspect of his personality, not a description of his politics."
 (p. 9). The key for understanding authoritarian followers is that they have a strong desire not to "rock the boat" in whatever social situation they inhabit.

B. Authoritarian Leaders

You can't have a follower until you first have a leader to follow.

Thus, if we want to get to the core problem with authoritarianism, we must go to and deal with the authoritarian leaders: 
"The “soundness” of their [authoritarian leaders] thinking hardly means you can believe them, however. They are quite capable of saying whatever will get them ahead. After all, they hold that there’s no such thing as “right” and “wrong.” It all boils down to what you can get away with. And one of the most useful skills a person should develop, they say, is how to look someone straight in the eye and lie convincingly."
(p. 170, emphasis added). In Eastern thought, where Daoism / Taoism variants are more abundant, the same holds true in yin/yang subgroups:
"In Daoist metaphysics, distinctions between good and bad, along with other dichotomous moral judgments, are perceptual, not real; so, the duality of yin and yang is an indivisible whole." (Yin and Yang)
"Shame and guilt are illusions" (Taoism and Guilt or Shame)
Thus, we see that the two work as a sort of self-reinforcing whole, which can make them more difficult to distinguish.

C. Both

I want the authoritarianism phenomenon to be envisioned, in the context of this post, by using the concept of "epigovernment" as authoritarian leader and the concept of "government" as authoritarian follower (Epigovernment: The New Model - 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1).

So, we can see how this dynamic works hand and glove, and in the tradition of this blog, that dynamic would have been engendered by some power toxin that operates within the confines of power to cause some initial corruption that eventually grew like a cancer.

It is important to remember that authoritarianism is also a mutual dynamic, built of both parts like yin and yang, leader and follower:
"Authoritarianism is something authoritarian followers and authoritarian leaders cook up between themselves. It happens when the followers submit too much to the leaders, trust them too much, and give them too much leeway to do whatever they want -- which often is something undemocratic, tyrannical and brutal."
(p. 2, emphasis added). That takes place at an early stage of the evolution of the tyranny, but it eventually evolves into "if I want your opinion I will beat it out of you."

Whatever the power toxin is, which causes that evolutionary leap of lapse in judgment, the antidote available all along the way is well known.

That antidote is essential to democracy all along the way, and is called "accountability" (When Accountability Is A Plague, 2, 3).

D. Stockholm Syndrome Sufferers

The Stockholm Syndrome is next, which in my mind at this time is just an extreme degree of the authoritarian follower described earlier:
"On August 23rd, 1973 two machine-gun carrying criminals entered a bank in Stockholm, Sweden. Blasting their guns, one prison escapee named Jan-Erik Olsson announced to the terrified bank employees “The party has just begun!” The two bank robbers held four hostages, three women and one man, for the next 131 hours. The hostages were strapped with dynamite and held in a bank vault until finally rescued on August 28th.

After their rescue, the hostages exhibited a shocking attitude considering they were threatened, abused, and feared for their lives for over five days. In their media interviews, it was clear that they supported their captors and actually feared law enforcement personnel who came to their rescue. The hostages had begun to feel the captors were actually protecting them from the police. One woman later became engaged to one of the criminals and another developed a legal defense fund to aid in their criminal defense fees. Clearly, the hostages had “bonded” emotionally with their captors.

While the psychological condition in hostage situations became known as “Stockholm Syndrome” due to the publicity, the emotional “bonding” with captors was a familiar story in psychology. It had been recognized many years before and was found in studies of other hostage, prisoner, or abusive situations such as:
  • Abused Children
  • Battered/Abused Women
  • Prisoners of War
  • Cult Members
  • Incest Victims
  • Criminal Hostage Situations
  • Concentration Camp Prisoners
  • Controlling/Intimidating Relationships
In the final analysis, emotionally bonding with an abuser is actually a strategy for survival for victims of abuse and intimidation. The “Stockholm Syndrome” reaction in hostage and/or abuse situations is so well recognized at this time that police hostage negotiators no longer view it as unusual. In fact, it is often encouraged in crime situations as it improves the chances for survival of the hostages."
(Love and Stockholm Syndrome: The Mystery of Loving an Abuser). Those authoritarian followers, who merely lick the boots of authoritarian leaders, go all "Stockholm Syndrome on steroids" on us at times.

Note that Stockholm Syndrome does not work as a survival mechanism in the context of climate change.

In fact, it works toward the opposite result, the absence of survival (a.k.a. extinction).

VI. The Creator of Climate Change: Oil-Qaeda

A. The Precursor to Oil-Qaeda

For the context of this post, one of the notable dynamics of culture, which the industrial revolution (that began circa 1750) fostered, was a resurgent and growing trust of business on the part of government officials.

Whiz-bang gadgetry and industrial prowess promised many a commodity which were carte blanche perceived of as bricks with which to build a better lifestyle.

This unfortunately broke down some social barriers that certainly should not have been taken down, accountability being one of them.

The old adage of governance "the king can do no wrong" had been rejected in the revolution whereby the United States came into being (Sovereign Immunity Source: Toxins of Power?).

Independence, and the resistance to the wrongs of the king, was the result of rejecting "the king can do no wrong" (The Unanimous Declaration, Independence From What, 2).

Independence was also a rejection of authoritarianism, especially the configuration that works within the mold of feudalism (American Feudalism, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11).

B. The Flip Flop

A new philosophy eventually developed during the new industrial revolution, a philosophy that was "secretly" growing, but it was a philosophy that was the opposite direction from the aforementioned sentiments of the revolution.

The American political revolution had rejected the notion that "the king can do no wrong", replacing it with "the people can do no wrong."

Nevertheless, the industrial revolution began to engender sentiments that would replace "the king" with a neo-feudal type of neo-plutocracy (Plutocracy).

It manifested as a "collective king" which was composed of "those who know best."

It was well hidden "in plain site" in some senses, but was also unabashedly proclaimed publicly in a 1928 American book:
THE conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society. Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. We are governed, our minds are molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society.
Edward L. Bernays

Our invisible governors are, in many cases, unaware of the identity of their fellow members in the inner cabinet.

They govern us by their qualities of natural leadership, their ability to supply needed ideas and by their key position in the social structure. Whatever attitude one chooses to take toward this condition, it remains a fact that in almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons — a trifling fraction of our hundred and twenty [now 320] million — who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind, who harness old social forces and contrive new ways to bind and guide the world.
It is the purpose of this book to explain the structure of the mechanism which controls the public mind, and to tell how it is manipulated by the special pleader who seeks to create public acceptance for a particular idea or commodity. It will attempt at the same time to find the due place in the modern democratic scheme for this new propaganda and to suggest its gradually evolving code of ethics and practice.
(Propaganda, by Edward L. Bernays, emphasis added). If you don't know about Bernays, you can't know about American history (Video About Bernays).

Eventually, the propaganda industry (public relations,  PR "spin") became the mouthpiece of authoritarian leaders and followers.

That propaganda industry was the way to interface with the growing consumer society, the public.

That new PR business was great for both the authoritarian leaders and the authoritarian followers, and it is still a vast and wealthy business today (The Deceit Business).

C. Oil-Qaeda Forever To The Rescue

By the time of WW II, Oil-Qaeda had inexorably risen to become a new offspring swaddled in the arms of the state:
John D. Rockefeller, in his 1909 Random Reminiscences of Men and Events, recalled, "One of our greatest helpers has been the State Department. Our ambassadors and ministers and consuls have aided to push our way into new markets in the utmost corners of the world." But he left out a key explanation for the government's interest. Standard Oil was the biggest U.S. company, putting a hundred ships to sea, buying and selling oil in Latin America, Germany, and the Far East. It also operated a global intelligence system. "By 1885," according to one historian, "seventy percent of the Standard's business was overseas and it had its own network of agents through the world, and its own espionage service, to forestall the initiatives of rival companies or governments."
(American Theocracy: The Peril and Politics of ..., emphasis added). By way of its mouthpieces in the propaganda industry, Oil-Qaeda eventually firmly implanted itself into the soul of western culture and civilization.

It was religiously done in a way we can clearly still see working today:
"The enemy aggressor is always pursuing a course of larceny, murder, rapine and barbarism. We are always moving forward with high mission, a destiny imposed by the Deity to regenerate our victims, while incidentally capturing their markets; to civilise savage and senile and paranoid peoples, while blundering accidentally into their oil wells or metal mines."
(As We Go Marching, by John T. Flynn, 1944, p. 222, emphasis added). Yes, we are still "always moving forward with high mission, a destiny imposed by the Deity to regenerate" that mid-eastern "enemy aggressor [that] is always pursuing a course of larceny, murder, rapine and barbarism," and we still blunder "accidentally into their oil wells."

The scene of all that barbarism, which our mission regenerates, was in the middle east where most of "our oil" was considered to be in those days: 
"Long before politicians mewled helplessly about the power of “Big Oil”, carbon-based fuels were shaping our very political, legal, intellectual, and physical structures.
For instance, the invasion of Iraq in 2003 was a pivotal moment in America’s strategic outlook. America, a global hegemon whose empire was weakening, seized the second largest oil deposits in the world as a way of preventing its economic and political decline.
The last declining global hegemon, Great Britain, also engaged in a brutal and highly controversial British occupation of Iraq, in the 1920s, pressed aggressively by the well-known British conservative, Winston Churchill." - (Book Review of "Carbon Democracy", emphasis added)

"From the moment he arrived at the Admiralty, a young man of destiny, Churchill started to prepare the fleet for the Battle of Armageddon he believed was inevitable." - (John McCain's Book About Churchill, emphasis added)

"Then, in 1911, the German Kaiser provoked the Agadir crisis ... Churchill went to the Admiralty and his outlook transformed. He was immediately confronted with the decisive question: to convert the navy from coal to oil ... the "fateful plunge" was made ... in April 1912 ... five oil-burning battleships were approved.
Britain was well supplied with coal [but not oil]. It was the Royal Navy which was the impetus for the development of the oil industry in Britain. The problem was supply and the security of that supply. Initially, the British government purchased shares in the Anglo-Persian Oil Company, subsequently, British Petroleum [BP]." - (Winston S. Churchill, by Eugene L. Rasor, p. 157-58)

"Then, to prevent further disruptions, Britain enmeshed itself ever more deeply in the Middle East, working to install new shahs in Iran and carve Iraq out of the collapsing Ottoman Empire.

Churchill fired the starting gun, but all of the Western powers joined the race to control Middle Eastern oil." (What If We Never Run Out of Oil, emphasis added)
The middle east right now, in the gulf between Iran on one shore, Saudi Arabia and the UAE on the other shore, has armies, navies, and air forces marshalled.

Those marshalled military entities have enough fire-power to destroy human civilization several times over.

In other words, more than at any other time in history:
The 5th Fleet together with troops are in the Middle East where there is lots of oil.

The 4th Fleet has been reactivated after 58 years of being moth balled, and has been sent to Central / South America where there is also lots of oil.

A website of the federal government tells us:
"Oil is the lifeblood of America’s economy."
(Department of Energy [they removed it, so here is The Wayback Machine copy of that page: Department of Energy]). Which is the same thing as saying you are economically dead without your blood, your oil.

The struggle for economic life then, would be the struggle for oil would it not?
(The Fleets and Terrorism Follow The Oil). The Private Empire (a.k.a. Oil-Qaeda) has surgically inserted itself into American DNA, like the HIV virus does to an individual's DNA.

Then, that enemy virus is seen as part of its victim (MOMCOM: The Private Parts, 2, 3, 4, 5).

D. The Addiction That Oil-Qaeda Masterminded

Our culture is now a war-for-oil culture (a Wartocracy), busy at work in over a thousand military bases around the world (MOMCOM: A Mean Welfare Queen).

Whereby they are converting "the enemy aggressor" that is always "pursuing a course of larceny, murder, rapine and barbarism", so that our culture can always be "moving forward with high mission, a destiny imposed by the Deity to regenerate our victims, while incidentally capturing their markets; to civilise savage and senile and paranoid peoples, while blundering accidentally into their oil wells or metal mines" (ibid, "As We Go Marching").

Consequently, a recent president, firmly implanted within Oil-Qaeda, unabashedly proclaimed that "we" are addicted to oil (Glorious Addictions - War & Oil, 2).

VII. How Do You Feel About Oil-Qaeda?

Are you an authoritarian leader, authoritarian follower, Stockholm syndrome sufferer, or a healthy citizen who wants Oil-Qaeda brought to justice?

There are movements around the world that see the need for justice, the need for accountability, to be applied to Oil-Qaeda:
Top lawyers put fossil fuel bosses on trial in the UK's supreme court in a mock case to explore the crime of ecocide - environmental destruction - which is being considered by the UN ... It's a grim list: genocide, crimes against humanity, crimes of aggression (such as unprovoked invasions) and war crimes. All are recognised by the UN as crimes against peace and prosecuted through the international criminal court.

But should the bosses of polluting companies and the leaders of environmentally-unfriendly states join those responsible for mass murder in the dock. They could if a fifth crime against peace - ecocide - joined that list of human evils? The United Nations is now considering the proposal and the first test of how a prosecution for ecocide would work takes place on Friday, with fossil fuel bosses in the dock at the UK supreme court in London. It is a mock trial of course, but with real top-flight lawyers and judges and a jury made up of members of the public. The corporate CEOs will be played by actors briefed by their legal teams.
(Is 'Insanity' A Valid Defense To Ecocide?, 2, 3). Should we not do that, but rather follow the beliefs of Oil-Qaeda and Yin Yang, and believe that both "shame and guilt are illusions"?

VIII. Conclusion

Global warming induced climate change is not a victimless dynamic.

All of human civilization and non-human species are endangered (MOMCOM's Mass Suicide & Murder Pact - 5, 4, 3, 2, 1).

Endangered by what Oil-Qaeda has deliberately done, and then lied about it over the past century or so:
Internal fossil fuel industry memos reveal decades of disinformation — a deliberate campaign to deceive the public that continues even today.

For nearly three decades, many of the world's largest fossil fuel companies have knowingly worked to deceive the public about the realities and risks of climate change.

Their deceptive tactics are now highlighted in this set of seven "deception dossiers"—collections of internal company and trade association documents that have either been leaked to the public, come to light through lawsuits, or been disclosed through Freedom of Information (FOIA) requests.

Each collection provides an illuminating inside look at this coordinated campaign of deception, an effort underwritten by ExxonMobil, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, BP, Shell, Peabody Energy, and other members of the fossil fuel industry.
(Union of Concerned Scientists: The climate deception dossiers). The first sentence in that quote contains the statement "a deliberate campaign to deceive the public that continues even today."

That statement is bolstered by very recent evaluations of some of the pseudo-science which they fund (Learning from mistakes in climate research, PDF).

Take time to think about whether or not "king Oil-Qaeda" can do no wrong.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Hypothesis: Toxins of Power Originate in Molecular Machines - 2

Universe of molecular machines
I. Introduction

A recent post at Dredd Blog points out that the physical universe, including the human brain and body, is composed substantially of molecular machines (The New Paradigm: The Physical Universe Is Mostly Machine - 3).

That post draws from, among other things, two books mentioned in the New York Review of Books, and a long list of Dredd Blog posts on the subject of molecular machines going back to 2009 (The New Paradigm: The Physical Universe Is Mostly Machine).

Those two books are: "Life’s Engines: How Microbes Made Earth Habitable", and "A New History of Life: The Radical New Discoveries About the Origins and Evolution of Life on Earth."

II. The Revolutionary Context

In a previous Dredd Blog post, the latter book had been discussed a bit, even featuring a video of the author, at a book signing in Seattle.

There, Dr. Peter Ward talked about the book contents, which indicated that the book was revolutionary (Weekend Rebel Science Excursion - 42).

The first chapter of the first book I mentioned, the other book in the review, Life’s Engines, discusses how scientists missed the full picture of evolution:
The concept of genes and the basis of the physical inheritance of traits were totally unknown to Darwin, or anyone else at the time. [p. 19]
The concept of origin, as in the origin of life, was in the back of Darwin’s mind but not explicitly discussed in the book. [p. 20]
Even if Darwin had observed fossil microbes, he would almost certainly not have understood what their relationship to plants or animals was. Darwin, and virtually every other scientist in the nineteenth century, would have been profoundly surprised to learn that plants and animals had all descended from microbes over a period of time that was completely unimaginable in the nineteenth century ... [p. 21]
(Life’s Engines, Chapter 1, cf. Princeton University Press). The book also takes a revolutionary look at microbes, in terms of their part in evolutionary unfolding.

It pointis out how the establishment's scientific and religious communities at large missed the big little picture by not considering microbial life as the first order of inquiry:
In sum, the oversight of microbes, in both the literal and figurative senses, distorted our worldview of evolution for more than a century, and including microbes in our understanding of evolution is still a work in progress. [p. 12]
Microbes were missed because of our observational biases. They had been on this planet for billions of years before the first animal arose. Let’s meet the missing microbes and see how they played an outsized role in making this planet function. Without microbes, we would not be here. [p. 22]
(Life’s Engines, Chap. 1). Thus, the book points out, the two major sources for the science (Darwin) and faith (Bible) of origins had not discussed microbes (in fact Darwin was not even aware of either microbes or genes).

I don't want to be a spoiler, but I will address your attention to the second half of the title of the book "How Microbes Made Earth Habitable."

That indicates a revolution in scientific hypotheses and theories.

III. Ok, So What About The Molecular Machines?

The title of the New York Book Review piece, mentioned in Section I above, sets the molecular machine stage: "How You Consist of Trillions of Tiny Machines."

A concept that has been discussed on Toxins of Power blog for years:
Dr Clarke said: “There are a lot of fundamental questions about the origins of life and many people think they are questions about biology. But for life to have evolved, you have to have a moment when non-living things become livingeverything up to that point is chemistry.”
“Our cells, and the cells of all organisms, are composed of molecular machines. These machines are built of component parts, each of which contributes a partial function or structural element to the machine. How such sophisticated, multi-component machines could evolve has been somewhat mysterious, and highly controversial.” Professor Lithgow said.
Many cellular processes are carried out by molecular ‘machines’ — assemblies of multiple differentiated proteins that physically interact to execute biological functions ... Our experiments show that increased complexity in an essential molecular machine evolved because of simple, high-probability evolutionary processes, without the apparent evolution of novel functions. They point to a plausible mechanism for the evolution of complexity in other multi-paralogue protein complexes.
The most complex molecular machines are found within cells.
Writing in the journal PLoS Pathogens, the team from Queen Mary's School of Biological and Chemical Sciences show how they studied the molecular machine known as the 'type II bacterial secretion system', which is responsible for delivering potent toxins from bacteria such as enterotoxigenic E. coli and Vibrio cholerae into an infected individual.

Professor Richard Pickersgill, who led the research, said: "Bacterial secretion systems deliver disease causing toxins into host tissue. If we can understand how these machines work, then we can work out how it they might be stopped."
(Do Molecular Machines Deliver Toxins of Power?). That there are molecular machines in organisms has been carried forward, on this blog, to also consider whether viruses may also have molecular machine components:
When is a life form not a life form? When it's a virus.

Viruses are strange things that straddle the fence between living and non-living. On the one hand, if they're floating around in the air or sitting on a doorknob, they're inert. They're about as alive as a rock. But if they come into contact with a suitable plant, animal or bacterial cell, they spring into action. They infect and take over the cell like pirates hijacking a ship.
Viruses are a curious lot. The standard drawing of the tree of life, the one you find on the inside back cover of biology textbooks, is divided into three branches: Archaea, Bacteria and Eukarya. Viruses don’t make it onto the page.

That makes sense, some scientists argue, because they’re not alive. They can’t reproduce on their own; they require the cozy environment of living cells for their survival. Others disagree. Not only are viruses alive, they say, but genetic evidence indicates that they may have been the first forms of life on Earth, predating cellular life.
The processes responsible for the evolution of key innovations, whereby lineages acquire qualitatively new functions that expand their ecological opportunities, remain poorly understood. We examined how a virus, bacteriophage λ, evolved to infect its host, Escherichia coli, through a novel pathway. Natural selection promoted the fixation of mutations in the virus’s host-recognition protein, J, that improved fitness on the original receptor, LamB, and set the stage for other mutations that allowed infection through a new receptor, OmpF. These viral mutations arose after the host evolved reduced expression of LamB, whereas certain other host mutations prevented the phage from evolving the new function. This study shows the complex interplay between genomic processes and ecological conditions that favor the emergence of evolutionary innovations.
If not for a virus, none of us would ever be born.

In 2000, a team of Boston scientists discovered a peculiar gene in the human genome. It encoded a protein made only by cells in the placenta. They called it syncytin.
What made syncytin peculiar was that it was not a human gene. It bore all the hallmarks of a gene from a virus.

Viruses have insinuated themselves into the genome of our ancestors for hundreds of millions of years.
It turned out that syncytin was not unique to humans. Chimpanzees had the same virus gene at the same spot in their genome. So did gorillas. So did monkeys. What’s more, the gene was strikingly similar from one species to the next.
(Are Toxins of Power Machines or Organisms?). We are getting closer all the time, but, we must consider how molecular machines make, and then deliver, toxins of power.

IV. What About The Toxins of Power In Molecular Machines?

There is one ironclad and well known phenomenon deep down in any molecular machine, or any molecule for that matter, which can deliver what we can call a potential toxin of power:
"The analysis of the original proton wave packet involves an interesting phase problem, and, since the energy distribution is temperature dependent, the whole phenomenon is also temperature dependent."
"The tunneling times will depend essentially on the height and the form of the barrier. In DNA, the form of the double-well potentials regulating the hydrogen bonds depend not only on the base pair involved but also on neighboring pairs, their net charges, and the entire electric environment. The tunneling time is hence not only characteristic for a certain biological specimen but is also a function of the position in the DNA molecule involved. The tunneling time is very likely also temperature dependent, even if the protons are well shielded in the double helix. The main problem is whether the tunneling time is very short in comparison to the replication time, or whether there exist organisms where the penetration of the barrier is slow in comparison to the replication." 
"It should always be remembered that, in Born's interpretation of quantum mechanics, the quantity |¥|² represents the probability density for finding the proton in a specific position. The tunneling of the wave packet is hence a time-dependent process which is going to influence the properties of the genetic code.
"In this connection, it should be observed that the tunneling probabilities depend not only on the base pair involved but also on the electrostatic environment, the neighboring base pairs, etc., which may explain the occurrence of "hot spots."
At a DNA replication, the protons have to "choose sides," and the proton code immediately after a DNA replication represents actually a nonstationary state from the quantum-mechanical point of view. The time evolution of the system and particularly the penetration of the potential barrier in the double-well potential represents a loss of the genetic code which should perhaps be considered as the primary cause of aging. The aging is thus a process which goes on continuously in the DNA molecule but gets "manifested" at the replications.
Proton tunneling may finally be of importance in connection with the occurrence of spontaneous tumors. The growth of an individual is a highly refined balance between factors which enhance the cell duplication and other factors which limit this duplication so that the organism takes a specific shape. The entire process is stimulated and controlled by various enzymes, and there is a feedback from the environment about which we know, at present, very little. If there is a somatic mutation, i.e., a change of the genetic code in a DNA molecule in the body of an organism, the change may influence the protein synthesis and the balance between the enhancing and controlling enzyme actions in the growth cycle. Actually, the new genetic code may lead to the development of a "new individual" within the individual, i.e., a tumor."
"In this paper we have pointed out that, since the protons are not classical particles but "wave packets" obeying the laws of modern quantum theory, the genetic code cannot --in spite of all precautions-- be 100% stable. Due to the quantum-mechanical "tunnel effect," there is always a small but finite probability that the protons will change place, alter the genetic code, and give rise to mutations. This implies also that this transfer of protons over a distance of about 10-8 cm may be one of the driving forces in the evolution of living organisms on the earth."
(Stem Cell Malfunction A Quantum Toxin Source?, quoting the journal: Reviews Of Modern Physics, Vol. 35, No. 3, by Per-Olov Lowden, 1963). That is a purely abiotic dynamic, in terms of the core physics (cf. The Uncertain Gene).

Proton tunnelling can happen to any atom or molecule that is part of an utterly lifeless rock on planets, a steel beam in a skyscraper, a virus, a microbe, or other biological entities.

V. A Curious Example

Let's look at the corruption of a powerful group, which is ostensibly the most aware and knowledgeable group concerning human cognition.

They are the mind doctors.

Yet, it is coming to light that:
The largest association of psychologists in the United States is on the brink of a crisis, the Guardian has learned, after an independent review revealed that medical professionals lied and covered up their extensive involvement in post-9/11 torture. The revelation, puncturing years of denials, has already led to at least one leadership firing and creates the potential for loss of licenses and even prosecutions.

For more than a decade, the American Psychological Association (APA) has maintained that a strict code of ethics prohibits its more than 130,000 members to aid in the torture of detainees while simultaneously permitting involvement in military and intelligence interrogations. The group has rejected media reporting on psychologists’ complicity in torture; suppressed internal dissent from anti-torture doctors; cleared members of wrongdoing; and portrayed itself as a consistent ally against abuse.

Now, a voluminous independent review conducted by a former assistant US attorney, David Hoffman, undermines the APA’s denials in full – and vindicates the dissenters.
(Guardian: Psychologists and ‘Enhanced’ Interrogation; Full report: PDF). Some of the minds in the group became corrupted by toxins of power.

That infection then spread through the organization's governors under the meme complex dynamics which groups tend to foster (A Structure RE: Corruption of Memes - 3).

VI. Conclusion

This post is getting way to long for a single post, so I will close now and continue this series another day.

The next post in this series will consider the advent of wireless communication, propaganda, and other signalling.

That is, communication of various sorts as both a source of toxins of power, and as a remedial dimension for neutralizing toxins of power (a teaser is here).

For those readers who want to follow the overall evolutionary hypotheses about how the molecular machines evolved, consider (On the Origin of the Genes of Viruses, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13; The Uncertain Gene, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11).

The previous post in this series is here.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

What Next, Mass Depraved-Heart Murder?

Power corrupts
In this post I offer an actual example of cases where the toxins of power are at work under the covers.

One generally supposes that governments do all they can to protect citizens, especially during droughts or other global warming induced climate change events.

And that would generally be the case except when the toxins of power corrupt the cognitive ability, not to mention the heart of those exposed to power.

Mass-poisoning of the populace does not seem like a normal government function does it?

A federal lawsuit filed in California alleges just that:
Plaintiff Hopkins
"Every month, Occidental and Chevron directly pump 2.63 times more toxic waste water into the San Joaquin Aquifer than oil released into the Gulf during the entire BP spill. The California Division of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal Resources (DOGGR) plans to allow them to continue for another 21 months. This lawsuit brought to stop the poisoning of the San Joaquin aquifer and to remediate the damage already done to the farmland of Kern County."
(Comm. To Protect Our Agricultural Water vs Occidental Oil & Gas, p. 1, emphasis added). I guess the case could also be called The People vs. The Bastids.

Defendants include officials in the California Government, from the Governor on down, as well as a boatload of Oil-Qaeda executives and operatives.

The complaint alleges Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) violations, constitutional violations under color of state law, and conspiracy to commit them:
"G. The Conspiracy

Beginning in 2011, the Oil Companies kept close attention to the EPA audit.

The Oil Companies knew that they ignored the regulations to protect underground water, and if the public knew of the risks, the Oil Companies would face massive liability for potential contamination of groundwater (historical and future). The Oil Companies also knew that they needed government approvals to engage in hydraulic fracturing. If the public knew of their failure to comply with underground injection control (UIC) requirements for waste water, the Oil Companies would be subject to greater scrutiny for hydraulic fracturing – waste water from fracking includes added chemicals.

The Oil Companies also knew that they needed landowners to approve the hydraulic fracturing, and if these landowners knew of these problems, landowners would not allow the Oil Companies to proceed with actions that would damage the farms and water supplies. By at least October 27, 2011, the Oil Companies agreed that no company would provide DOGGR with the documents to show protection of fresh water including (1) geological studies; (2) engineering studies; or (3) casing diagrams. This continues to the present day.

In early October of 2011, Occidental also directly contacted Governor Brown and told him to fire Miller and Chernow. Brown’s office then requested records about the permitting process as it related to Occidental. On October 14, 2011, Chernow sent documents regarding Occidental’s California operations to the senior officials handling the inquiry from Governor Brown. Chernow emailed that he was “willing to follow any direction as required. If direction is different than what the Department is currently pursuing, I would appreciate as explicit direction as possible.”

Less than a week later, on October 19, 2011, Occidental started reporting that “it cannot get the permits it needs for new drilling projects in California.” This was a misrepresentation of the problems arising from Occidental’s own decision not to follow the law.

On October 27, 2011, Occidental’s environmental engineer admitted to Chernow it had “the necessary information . . . However, he’s been told to stand down (by a lawyer is all I know) and not give us anything. There is apparently a meeting in Bakersfield at Oxy’s offices this afternoon to discuss whether they give us what we need or continue to give us nothing.”

Governor Brown’s office and his senior advisor, Cliff Rechtschaffen, scheduled a meeting with Miller and Chernow held the next day. Rechtschaffen notified them that DOGGR must immediately fast track permit approval. His team presented a document entitled the Temporary Assistance Program or TAP. Miller sought guidance from the United States Environmental Protection Agency about the list of demands.

The EPA representative reviewed and commented on it, and Miller responding by writing ... “I agree with your point that this has similarities to what was prepared by [Western States Petroleum Association ] WSPA.”

On November 2, 2011, Miller and Chernow went to another meeting which Rechtschaffen joined over the phone. Miller told Rechtschaffen the proposal violated the Safe Drinking Water Act. Rechtschaffen told her this was an order from Governor Brown."
(ibid, Complaint, pp. 25-27, line numbers removed, emphasis added). In other words, Oil-Qaeda guided the government officials to hide their illegalities.

This guidance of the California State Government by oil companies is not that rare (A Methanol Economy Way Out of Here - 6)

I know that government propaganda has hardened the public perception concerning "conspiracy theories," but the law is very well aware that conspiracies happen every day:
In fact, you might be surprised how many conspiracy theories are handled by the federal and state governments on a daily basis:
Over one-quarter of all federal criminal prosecutions and a large number of state cases involve prosecutions for conspiracy.
(Conspiracy Theory, 112 Yale L.J. 1307 (2003), Preface,  emphasis added). That is a lot of real, serious as a heart attack, beyond a reasonable doubt, and well documented occurrences of "conspiracy theories" going on in reality before the eyes of anyone who wants to see them.
(On The Origin of "Conspiracy Theory"). There is even the notion of conspiracy to commit "depraved-heart murder."

The case featured in this post is a civil case, but RICO can also be used in a criminal context:
"Defendants Brown, Nechodom, Kustic, Oviatt, DOGGR, WSPA, CIPA, OCCIDENTAL OIL AND GAS CORPORATION, CHEVRON U.S.A. INC., and others known and unknown, being persons employed by and associated with the Enterprise did unlawfully, knowingly, and intentionally conduct and participate, directly and directly in the conduct, management, and operation of the affairs of the Enterprise, which was engaged in and affected interstate and foreign commerce through racketeering activity that included numerous acts indictable under 18 U.S.C. § 371 (conspiracy to defraud the United States); 18 U.S.C. §§ 241 (intimidation of any person engaged in free exercise of speech or any Constitutional right); 1341 (mail fraud) , 1343 (wire fraud), 1346.43 (honest services), 1512 (b) (intimidating and threatening witnesses), and 1513(b) (intimidating and threatening witnesses)."
(ibid, Complaint, pp. 43-44, emphasis added; cf. Oil-Qaeda & MOMCOM Conspire To Commit Depraved-Heart Murder).

Hmmmm ....

Anyway, this blog will follow the above case as it develops, while elaborating on long standing Toxins of Power Blog hypotheses concerning the always mystical "toxins of power."

Sunday, May 24, 2015

The "Genes of Culture" In Civilization

Van Gogh: "Ward of Arles Hospital"
I. The Evolution of Culture

How is the evolution of culture different from the evolution of individuals?

We don't miss a beat or a step when the notion of individual people having genes is discussed.

But that is not so when it comes to the "genetic make-up" of a culture.

The reaction to that would be "how could a society, culture, or civilization have genes" except within individuals of that culture?

That is a fair question.

We are not talking about adding up the unique, physical genes of all the individuals to thereby derive the overall quantity of "genes of a culture."

No, as will be discussed below, we are talking somewhat more about epigenetics, as well as memes and memetics than we are talking about physical RNA / DNA.

That said, neither are we talking exclusively about memes and memetics, because group dynamics are often talked about in terms of culture and observable characteristics swirling within that culture (see e.g. Comparing a Meme Complex to a Cultural Amygdala, Comparing a Group-Mind Trance to a Cultural Amygdala).

II. Where Do We Observe It?

A reviewer noticed that sometimes it can be a bridge too far to try to equate or link individual genetic dynamics to the dynamics of a group/culture:
But for the same reason that the book has a near-flawless takeoff, it crashes in the end. The way that Trivers structures the text requires that he zero in on a concrete example within each chapter’s more general subject. For biological concepts, this strategy makes the reading highly accessible.

But it backfires when Trivers uses it to apply his theory of self-deception in the areas of war, religion, and false historical narratives. These subjects are too broad, and his links to self-deception too tenuous, to be compelling. By having such specificity, Trivers pigeonholes his arguments and greatly simplifies issues that are not as black-and-white as he claims.
(Review of Folly of Fools, by Robert Trivers). It is difficult to build a bridge across that gap between individual, physical genetics and some of the troubling behaviors of groups.

That is why there are other "takes" on that same book and its theme: (Academia Edu, Deceit by Trivers, Deception, Is Trivers Deceiving Himself?, Trivers Wikipedia, Trivers von Hippel, evolution of self-deception).

One thing is for sure though, when self-deceit becomes a part of culture, it goes all the way to the bone:
The American Psychological Association secretly collaborated with the administration of President George W. Bush to bolster a legal and ethical justification for the torture of prisoners swept up in the post-Sept. 11 war on terror, according to a new report by a group of dissident health professionals and human rights activists.

The report is the first to examine the association’s role in the interrogation program. It contends, using newly disclosed emails, that the group’s actions to keep psychologists involved in the interrogation program coincided closely with efforts by senior Bush administration officials to salvage the program after the public disclosure in 2004 of graphic photos of prisoner abuse by American military personnel at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.
(American Psychological Association Ok With Torture). It is a bit disconcerting when the groups responsible for watching for, identifying, and then treating a social malady are overcome by that very social malady (Minds in Tumult, Presidential Psycho Team).

One of the dangers of the type of hypothesis that seeks to find and analyze the maladjusted behavioral dynamics inside the culture of a particular group, is a type of group-think influenced by the notion of "collective guilt" (The Psychology of the Notion of Collective Guilt).

Individuals can be slandered by it even though they are not individually guilty of the wrongs of the group itself (e.g. "all Islamic believers are evil therefore it is ok to torture or mistreat any of them").

It is important to remember that groups are composed of individuals who can and do differ, and therefore must also be considered in that light, i.e., as individuals as well being considered as group members.

Individuals in a group could metaphorically be considered as the individual genes of the group, which we know do have different characteristics.

It is clear, then, that as a preliminary matter we ought not paint everyone with the same group-brush merely because they are members of a group.

This is especially so when we now know the importance of epigenetics (One Man's Junk Gene Is Another Man's Treasure Gene?, The Uncertain Gene - 11, On The Origin of Genieology).

III. Where Does The "Cultural Deceit-Gene" Originate?

The phenomenon of deceit also happens way, way down in the unseen, tiny realm of individuals in groups which, for the most part, help us at every level of the ecosystem on Earth.

I am talking about a veritable universe of microbes and viruses: "there may be a hundred million times more viruses on Earth than there are stars in the universe"  (The Real Dangers With Microbes & Viruses).

At a higher level than RNA and DNA, individual microbes or even groups of them can go crazy to become pathogens.

But, they can also return to sanity (Microbial Languages: Rehabilitation of the Unseen, 2).

Perhaps, by sophisticated honesty via communication they can even be separated from the misbehavior which uses deceit as a technique of survival (On The Origin of Propaganda, 2).

IV. The Toxins of Power Are Hidden

Scientists differ on the dynamics of deceit, and whether deceit is a good thing or a bad thing for society, because for one thing the origins of deceit are hidden.

Some of the hidden details may be because the origin of maladjusted viruses and microbes is part of the history that was made well before humans came to be (Are Microbes The Origin of PTSD?).

In other words, are the catastrophes of history, which cause mass extinctions or mass damage to biological organisms, a source of pathogenic behavior (What Did The Mass Extinctions Do To Viruses and Microbes?)?

V. Conclusion

We need to resist allowing either our education or our knowledge to degenerate into a cultural trance which can morph into mob psychology.

A mob psychology that can threaten our very civilization (Why Sea Level Rise May Be The Greatest Threat To Civilization, 2).

The following video is a brief discussion of collective guilt by association: